“IT’S not over yet,” insisted a defiant Dean Ryan despite Warriors’ Aviva Premiership future hanging by a thread after the latest setback.
There were plenty of positives for the Sixways director of rugby to take from Saturday’s 32-20 loss to Bath at The Rec, but it was the 19th defeat in 20 league matches for Worcester.
Warriors have two games left to save their skin although a daunting trip to table-topping Saracens on Saturday, May 3, is as difficult as they come at the moment.
However, Sarries laboured to a 23-18 win at second-from-bottom Newcastle Falcons yesterday as the hosts earned a losing bonus point to move eight clear of Ryan’s men.
The Worcester boss remains upbeat and, on the prospect of survival after being within touching distance of third-placed Bath before a late try, said: “I think it can happen.
“Do you think the side can’t play well against top-four opposition? They just did. Away from home, they got within the last minute of winning the game.
“I am not going to listen to or allow people just to get a cheap headline and say that it’s over because it isn’t yet.
“We know we have got to go to Saracens as we had to with Bath. If we can’t do something at Saracens, then you can write your headline.
“We could have won it in the last minute at Bath. You can’t write the headline that we are down given the fixture we have got and Saturday’s performance.
“You need to wait, like the rest of us, to see how we play in the Saracens game.
“We deserve that given what we have done over the last three or four weeks.”
Meanwhile, Ryan was angered by the officiating of novice referee Matthew Carley, who dished out harsh yellow cards to Warriors’ Sam Betty and George Ford of Bath.
On top of that, the man in the middle at times seemed worried to make his own decisions.
The game was frequently punctuated by visits to the big screen and conversations with TMO Rowan Kitt, who is a former King’s School Worcester pupil.
“I thought both yellow cards were a bit of a shambles,” stormed Ryan. “I’m sure (Bath coach) Toby Booth would have said the same.
“Both were easily manageable and neither were particularly dangerous in terms of how the individuals came back down.”