Baxter hails Chiefs triumph
September 4, 2010
Exeter's Hoani Tui charges forward during Saturday's remarkable win over Gloucester © Getty Images
Exeter Chiefs boss Rob Baxter was keeping his feet firmly planted on the ground after Saturday's stunning 22-10 win over Gloucester at Sandy Park.
Little was expected of the Chiefs on their Aviva Premiership debut but a try from Matt Foster and 17 points from fly-half Gareth Steenson saw them pull off a stunning upset win. Baxter was thrilled with his side's display but was quick to downplay the significance of the result.
"I am very aware that Gloucester had many try-scoring opportunities, missed a number of goal kicks and they were slightly off form," he said. "We are the Premiership new boys and the home game first up suited us more than them.
"I am, in fact, a little disappointed as I felt that had we moved the ball more in the first 20 minutes we could have opened up a bit more daylight. We should have backed ourselves more as it's a big wide pitch and we need to maximise the use of it.
"I said at half-time that he first 10 minutes after the interval was crucial and we needed not to concede during that period and, as we didn't, I felt we would win from the end of that 10 minutes.
"We've not won or lost anything today - the next three to four weeks are important as we have to see that we are improving and can meet the continuing demands of the season."
Steenson was the star of the show for the Chiefs but he felt that the credit for the shock victory lay elsewhere. However, he was happy to have ended with a 100 percent kicking record in light of the blustery conditions at Sandy Park.
"Our pack was outstanding today and it's just my job to put the ball over the bar," he said. "It is not the easiest place to kick a goal and I have had plenty of bad days. It takes a bit of getting used to, especially in winter, as we hope to make this ground a fortress for us."
Meanwhile, Gloucester coach Bryan Redpath was understandably enraged by the manner of the defeat and launched a furious post-match tirade against his players.
"Our performance was not acceptable. Exeter were everything I expected but we couldn't do the simple basics," he said. "The players have embarrassed themselves in front of all our supporters who came down to watch.
"We needed everything today and Nick (Robinson) compounded all the other errors with those (penalty) misses. A number of our players need to face up to their responsibilities with only (James) Simpson-Daniel showing any form today."