Fixtures - Top Bar

Match reaction: Harlequins 31 Newport Gwent Dragons 21

520669997MH00007_Harlequins

Harlequins’ director of rugby Conor O’Shea hailed his side’s fighting qualities after they scored 23 unanswered points after the break to see off Newport Gwent Dragons at the Twickenham Stoop.

Jonathan Evans and Jason Thomas scored first-half tries for Newport as they led 21-8 at the break but a double score from James Chisholm and an early try in the game from Ollie Lindsay-Hague saw Quins roar back.

Tim Swiel was equally as impressive with the boot, scoring 16 points for Harlequins as O’Shea’s men dragged themselves back into the game.   

“I was pretty beside myself because we were terrible in the first half,” said O’Shea.  “But that’s what this competition is about as well.

“It’s about young players understanding the mental mindset that you have to carry and they reacted again – they turned it around, they didn’t’ go into their shells, and they got the win so that’s the positive side of things.

“We’re so much better than that. We wanted an 80 minute performance like we played in the second half.

“The penalty count was horrific. They conceded 24 penalties, we only conceded eight. It’s very difficult to have a game when that’s going on but we’ll take the win. It gives us something to play for after Christmas with this group of players.”

Newport head coach Lyn Jones was understandably frustrated by his side’s penalty count after the break but still singled out a number of positives from the defeat at the Stoop.   

He said: "There are two sides to refereeing. I'm not going to make excuses but wherever you go the game is refereed differently.

"The scoreboard was shaped by the whistle, 23 points in the second half was shaped by 12 penalties to one. We looked a far better team to Quins in the first half. To score 21 points was very pleasing in one half but the territory dried up because of one technicality after another.

"Ross Wardle, Andrew Coombs, Cory Hill, and Joe Davies, who were all long term injuries, have returned tonight and on top of that we have a lot of young players making their debut for the region.

“I'm delighted with what I've learned from the young players, I'm delighted to have long-term injury players come back successfully. I'm delighted to have found answers to some nagging questions about some experienced players.

"We are one of the fittest teams in the Celtic league and our work rate is outstanding but you must appreciate that 12 penalties to one has an effect when you are running back all the time.

"We are trying to improve our game but we just need individuals to stand up now and have responsibilities for their actions."

Scorers
Harlequins
Tries: Lindsay-Hague, Chisholm (2)
Conversions: Swiel (2)
Penalties: Swiel (4)

Dragons
Tries: Evans, Thomas
Conversions: D Jones
Penalties: D Jones (3)

Referee: Greg MacDonald
Attendance: 7,623

Harlequins: R Chisholm; Walker, Hopper, Turner-Hall (Casson, 50), Lindsay-Hague; Swiel, Dickson; Lambert (Marfo 71), Buchanan (Ward, 50), Sinckler (Collier, 50), Matthews (Merrick, 61), Twomey, Trayfoot (Cheeseman, 66), Clifford, J Chisholm.
Not used: Stuart, Grimoldby

Dragons: GR Jones; Hewitt, Pewtner, Wardle (Williams, 55), Brew (Nightingale, 73); D Jones, Evans (L Jones, 69); Price (Gustafson, 68), Dee, Harris (Young, 63), Thomas, Hill, Coombs, Benjamin (Griffiths, 68), Powell (Davies, 63).
Not used: Fairbrother

For your definitive guide to the LV= Cup click here 

Be part of the rugby family at the LV= Cup Final at Franklin's Gardens, Northampton on Sunday 22 March. Visit www.northamptonsaints.co.uk for tickets

Latest News

European Challenge Cup quarter-final draw made

Group winners Bath Rugby and Gloucester Rugby will both be at home in their European Challenge Cup quarter-finals after topping…

BATH, UNITED KINGDOM - JANUARY 21: Anthony Watson of Bath Rugby goes over for his sides third try during the European Rugby Challenge Cup match between Bath Rugby and Pau at the Recreation Ground on January 21, 2017 in Bath, England. (Photo by Harry Trump/Getty Images)

Aviva Premiership Rugby European wrap: Big displays see Saracens, Gloucester Rugby and Bath Rugby progress

Mark McCall believes his Saracens side delivered a “coming of age” performance after a dogged 10-3 victory over Toulon guaranteed…

Gloucester Rugby v Bayonne - European Rugby Challenge Cup

European round-up: Northampton Saints

Northampton Saints did captain Lee Dickson proud on Friday night despite suffering a 26-17 defeat at the hands of Montpellier…

BARNET, ENGLAND - SEPTEMBER 17:  Lee Dickson of Northampton passes the ball during the Aviva Premiership match between Saracens and Northampton Saints at Allianz Park on September 17, 2016 in Barnet, England.  (Photo by David Rogers/Getty Images)

Concussion Management Review Group Update – Sale Sharks

The joint RFU/Premiership Rugby Concussion Management Review Group met following the referral of the untoward incident involving Sale Sharks’ player…

PremRugbyBallsSngle

Matt Hopper: Harlequins ready for Stade Francais cup final

Harlequins are gearing up for a ‘cup final’ when they visit France in the European Rugby Challenge Cup, but centre…

Harlequins v Saracens - Aviva Premiership

Chris Harris desperate to kick on after Newcastle Falcons return

Newcastle Falcons’ narrow European Rugby Challenge Cup loss to Grenoble may have dashed their hopes of making it through to…

Photo by Stu Forster/Getty Images

Gloucester Rugby name side for final European pool game against Bayonne

With a home quarter-final spot resting on the result, Gloucester Rugby make seven changes for the visit of Aviron Bayonnais…

Generated by  IJG JPEG Library

Wasps team to travel to Parma to play Zebre Rugby

Director of Rugby Dai Young has named his squad to travel to Parma, for Wasps’ final match in the Champions…

Wasps v Toulouse - European Rugby Champions Cup

Donncha O’Callaghan to lead Worcester Warriors against Russians

Donncha O’Callaghan will lead Warriors in their final European Challenge Cup game of the 2016/17 campaign against Enisei-STM at Sixways…

Harlequins v Worcester Warriors - Aviva Premiership

Bath Rugby name strong side for final European pool game

Bath Rugby have named a strong team to face Pau in the final pool game of the European Rugby Challenge…

Semesa Rokoduguni

Leicester Tigers team news for Champions Cup

Jack Roberts and Luke Hamilton are recalled to the Leicester Tigers starting line-up for the European Champions Cup fixture against…

Generated by  IJG JPEG Library

Exeter Chiefs side to face ASM Clermont Auvergne

Whether history repeats itself for Exeter Chiefs in the European Champions Cup only time will tell, but head coach Rob…

Michele Campagnaro scored twice in Exeter Chiefs' 31-19 win over Ulster in Round 5.

Bristol Rugby name team for Cardiff Blues clash

Bristol Rugby round off their European Challenge Cup campaign with a visit to Cardiff Blues on Saturday (3pm KO). Head…

tusipisibri16sb1111

Newcastle Falcons team to face Ospreys

Newcastle Falcons have named their team for Saturday’s European Challenge Cup visit of unbeaten group leaders Ospreys, club captain Will…

Will Welch

Saracens name team to face Toulon

Saracens have named their side to face Toulon for Saturday’s round six European Rugby Champions Cup Pool 3 clash at…

Generated by  IJG JPEG Library

Sale Sharks Name Team To Take On Scarlets

Sale Sharks have named their side to take on Scarlets in Round Six of the European Rugby Champions Cup at…

willaddisonbatsal1617sb1111

Harlequins team to play Stade Francais

Harlequins has announced the squad to play Stade Francais in Round 6 of the European Rugby Challenge Cup at the…

James Horwill

Eddie Jones has announced his England squad ahead of the 2017 RBS 6 Nations

The 34-man squad will train in Portugal between 22 – 27 January before assembling at Pennyhill Park to prepare for…

Maro Itoje missed out on the autumn internationals with a fractured hand.

Tom Arscott statement

Sale Sharks have today issued the following statement on Tom Arscott.  Sale Sharks have today terminated the contract of Tom…

BARNET, ENGLAND - DECEMBER 10:  Owen Farrell of Saracens and Tom Arscott of Sale Sharks during the European Rugby Champions Cup match between Saracens and Sale Sharks at Allianz Park on December 10, 2016 in Barnet, United Kingdom. (Photo by Stephen Pond/Getty Images)

Jack O’Connell eyeing Bristol Rugby momentum from European finale

Qualification for the European Rugby Challenge Cup knockout stages may be beyond Bristol Rugby but Jack O’Connell claims they are…

666710651_tm_0740_96dd8701c3a7992af96ab9d019ac86f2.jpg