Newport-Gwent Dragons 33 Worcester 10
Despite not registering a win in any of their three Powergen Cup matches this season, Worcester's director of rugby John Brain remains upbeat and believes that the competition has given him an insight into the depth of his squad at Sixways.
Saturday's showdown with Newport-Gwent Dragons was effectively a dead rubber as neither side could progress beyond the group stages. Brain took advantage of the situation to blood a number of his academy players.
Not surprisingly, the Dragons were bigger and better and their victory owed much to a powerful pack and a clinical kicker in Craig Warlow.
But, despite the result, Brain believes that the match served as an invaluable lesson, both for him and the players.
"Some of them are miles away," he said. "Some of them can be extremely competitive and are progressing nicely.
"You've got a mixed bag but it does tell you an awful lot. It's a very informative exercise.
"It's not very often we get an opportunity midway through the season to put young players on the field and to field players who have not had a lot of first-team rugby this season. You do learn quite a lot about certain individuals."
After Lee Fortey hurt his knee in training, Brain began the match at Rodney Parade with teenager Matt Mullan in the front row. Within three minutes, he was joined on the other side of the scrum by blood replacement Callum Black - another prop with no first-team experience.
The pair, along with new signing Gavin Hickie at hooker, had to hold the fort for several minutes while Mike MacDonald received treatment off the pitch.
Dragons gave the visitors no time to bed in and their forwards grabbed the game by the scruff of the neck.
First of all, prop Adam Black broke the Worcester resistance to register the first try of the game and then flanker Andrew Hall touched down after a five-metre lineout and drive.
Brain said: "We started poorly and discipline let us down. We got a little outmuscled up front."
With Warlow showing fine form with the boot, Dragons found themselves 17-0 up with only a quarter of the match gone.
Warriors did fight back and James Brown scored the first points with a penalty in front of the posts.
They threatened to make a real match of it when Aisea Havili, easily Worcester's most dangerous player on the day, sprinted from inside his own 22 and put the ball down in the corner.
When Brown converted, the gap was only seven points but that was as good as it got for Warriors.
The hosts, despite losing their inspirational wing Gareth Wyatt after he dislocated his elbow, were on top of their game for the entire second half and when Worcester collapsed a scrum in injury time, Newport were awarded their third try of the game.
Brain made no apologies for resting most of the players who have guided his team to fourth in the Guinness Premiership as well as the two players - England's Pat Sanderson and Wales' Chris Horsman - who have been on international duty for the last month.
"I think the main thing is we got through it without any serious injury," he said. "We've come off the back of a hard month so it was important for us to rest our frontline players."