Fixtures - Top Bar

European pool finale left Mulchrone’s head spinning

501181425SF00033_Newcastle_

London Irish snuck into the European Rugby Challenge Cup quarter-finals in dramatic fashion on Saturday and centre Fergus Mulchrone admits it is still yet to sink in.

The Exiles had left themselves with plenty to do on the final weekend in Pool 5 following a 28-18 defeat at home to leaders Grenoble in the penultimate round.

They travelled to Agen and held down their part of the bargain, picking up maximum points in a 31-17 win to keep their hopes alive.

And once news had filtered through that Edinburgh had left Grenoble empty-handed, Irish qualified for the knockout stages as the final seed, where they will face Aviva Premiership Rugby rivals Harlequins.

“We didn’t know until we got into the changing rooms and once that got announced we had a good night celebrating – but we got back on Sunday afternoon and straight into training on Monday,” said Mulchrone.

“It is derby in the quarter-finals as well, so it’s a bit more special. I don’t think it has really sunk in yet that we are through.

“We put ourselves under a bit of pressure, having lost to Grenoble at home. The boys involved there were bitterly disappointed and they wanted to put it right. It was fantastic.”

Irish got off to a flying start in France, as Luke Narraway and Tom Fowlie each crossed over inside the opening 20 minutes to establish a healthy lead.

Tom Smallbone added a third before the hosts dotted down twice, either side of half-time to threaten the Exiles’ hopes of qualification.

That is when Mulchrone stepped in, rolling off the back of a maul to grab the bonus-point score, before a penalty try wrapped things up in their favour.

Next up in Aviva Premiership Rugby is a trip to Sale Sharks and Irish will have to produce a similar display to pick up a season’s first away win in the league.

“We felt that if we stuck to our game plan to 60 or 70 minutes, that’s when we would be able to break them with fitness and it told,” added Mulchrone.

“We stuck to our structure very well for the first 30 minutes. We had a bit of a lull and let them back into the game but on the 50 we gathered and went a bit more direct.

“It was fantastic to dot down but I have to give credit to the pack. It was off the back of a maul and then they got the penalty try to finish it off. It gives us great momentum going back into the Premiership, too.”

 

Latest News

Worcester Warriors capture Samoa lock Chris Vui

Warriors have completed the signing of versatile Samoa forward Chris Vui till the end of the season. For everything you…

Chris Vui

Wallabies lock Will Skelton joins Saracens

Australian international forward Will Skelton has joined Saracens on a short-term deal. For everything you need to know about Saracens…

Will Skelton

Rowe hails ‘fantastic’ year for Exeter Chiefs

Exeter Rugby Club chairman and chief executive, Tony Rowe OBE, heralded a “fantastic” past year – on and off the…

Exeter Chiefs celebrate

Dan Tuohy joins Bristol Rugby with immediate effect

Dan Tuohy has penned a deal with Bristol Rugby to make the switch to Aviva Premiership Rugby with immediate effect.…

Dan Tuohy

Ally Hogg, Cooper Vuna, Aaron Morris, Lachlan Turner, Bryce Heem and Dan Robson head the Opta Rugby Rankings

Attacks dominated as Newcastle Falcons claimed a dramatic win over Harlequins this weekend in Premiership Rugby but Ally Hogg starred…

allyhogg16sb1111

Premiership Rugby backs Newcastle’s bid for 2018 European Rugby Cup Finals

Premiership Rugby today confirmed its “100% support” for Newcastle’s bid to become host city for European club rugby union's showpiece…

Newcastle Falcons celebrate

Newcastle launches bid for 2018 European Rugby Cup finals

Newcastle is bidding to become the host city for European club rugby union's showpiece weekend in May 2018. The aim…

Newcastle Falcons celebrate

Aviva Premiership Rugby wrap: Round 10

Maro Itoje could not mark his return to a Saracens jersey with a victory – but his director of rugby…

BATH, ENGLAND - DECEMBER 03:  Maro Itoje of  Saracens is tackled by Max Lahiff of Bath during the Aviva Premiership match between Bath Rugby and Saracens at the Recreation Ground on December 3, 2016 in Bath, England.  (Photo by Michael Steele/Getty Images)

Pat Lam confirmed as Bristol Rugby head coach

Bristol Rugby is delighted to announce the appointment of Pat Lam as the Club’s new Head Coach. The 48 year-old…

Pat Lam

Newcastle Falcons v Saracens kick-off time change

Premiership Rugby can confirm that the kick-off time for the Aviva Premiership Rugby Round 17 Newcastle Falcons v Saracens fixture…

Aviva Premiership ball

Match Reaction: Worcester Warriors 12 Wasps 26

Wasps maintained the pressure on Aviva Premiership Rugby leaders Saracens with success over Worcester Warriors – a victory Dai Young…

Rob Miller deputised in sterling fashion (Photo by Tony Marshall/Getty Images)

Match Reaction: Newcastle Falcons 38 Harlequins 32

Dean Richards’ Newcastle Falcons side are evolving according to the director of rugby, after he saw his side run in…

Generated by  IJG JPEG Library