A last-minute Ian Madigan penalty secured a crucial victory for Pat Lam's Bristol on Saturday, in a game that was of huge importance for their season.
With Leicester Tigers easing the pressure on themselves thanks to a win on Friday night, Bristol Bear's quest to avoid relegation meant they needed a result against top dogs Saracens. A late kick from the Irish out-half made it 23-21 and pushed Lam's outfit 11 points clear of the drop zone.
— Blackstar Solutions (@blackstarsols) April 13, 2019
It was a poor day for Saracens, who had number 8 Billy Vunipola booed by fans at Ashton Gate due to his recent social media post. Bristol's made a not-so-subtle point of it on the day.
— Bristol Bears (@BristolBears) April 13, 2019
On the field, it's been a successful season for Pat Lam. Speaking to Balls.ie last week, former Connacht and now Bristol back-row Jake Heenan hailed Lam's work with the group: "He works tremendously hard and he cares a lot about playing a good and healthy game."
Off the field, Lam sets his own example as well. As reported by the Guardian, he was asked about his fellow Pacific Islanders views and gave a typically nuanced and intelligent take on the matter.
Jesus is very clear – I’m not here to judge anyone. I’ll judge their performances later as a rugby coach, but I’m not going to judge anyone or what anyone does. It’s about what I do, about my relationship with the big feller, how I treat people - and that’s all I can control. I’m not going to judge anybody on their views or beliefs.