After seven long seasons, Bristol Rugby will once again be hosting top flight rugby next year after beating Doncaster in the Championship final.
Cheered on by a capacity crowd of 16,000 on Wednesday night at Ashton Gate, Bristol lost 32-34 but thanks to last week’s victory in Yorkshire they won by an aggregate of 13 points over two legs, prompting a mass pitch invasion.
James Phillips – who started his career at Cleve RFC in Mangotsfield – went over for a try in the 73rd minute, another try was scored by Will Cliff and Callum Sheedy kicked 22 points.
We’re back. pic.twitter.com/4W4W0YRPvU
— Bristol Rugby (@Bristol_RFC) May 25, 2016
This year, the team played Rotherham, Bedford and Ealing. Next year, they will be up against the likes of West Country rivals Bath, Gloucester and Exeter, as well as international opposition in the European Cup.
“It didn’t matter how we did it, it’s about taking this step back into the Premiership,” Bristol director of rugby Andy Robinson told BBC Radio Bristol after the final whistle.
“The hard work starts now. There are a lot of improvements we have to make. We have to be humble. Let’s make sure that we enjoy tonight and then we go on to bigger things.”
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