Fixtures - Top Bar

Match Reaction: Harlequins 38 London Irish 30

DannyCareQuinsIrishEUROPE1516SB1005

Conor O’Shea breathed a sigh of relief after Danny Care’s hat-trick helped Harlequins fight off a superb London Irish performance to win 38-30 and book a European Rugby Challenge Cup semi-final against Grenoble.

Both sides clearly came to play entertaining rugby, but Shane Geraghty’s boot kept Irish in-touch at half-time after Care and Luke Wallace crossed for the hosts, with Fergus Mulchrone going over for the Exiles.

Tom Coventry’s side were electric in the second-half – Brendan McKibbin burrowing over and Sean Maitland scoring a superb individual try for a 30-18 lead.

But Quins were not to be out-done and Wallace added another try, while Care completed a first ever hat-trick in professional rugby as O’Shea’s men put 20 unanswered points on Irish, who sit twelfth in the Aviva Premiership Rugby  standings.

O’Shea, who is set to take over as Italy head coach next season, remains in the hunt for more silverware in what will be remembered as a glittering six-year spell at the South London club, and is happy his men came through a stern test of their title credentials. 

“Games aren't won on paper. Every single team in the Premiership are full of proud players and no-one is going to roll over,” he said.

"We were inconsistent throughout the game with our energy levels going up and down far too much. We played from too deep in our territory in the first half and were guilty of overplaying.

"However we will take the win as we came from being 30-18 down to score 20 unanswered points when decisions were going again us."

Coventry’s side’s attention turned from their battle with Newcastle Falcons and he will no doubt be buoyed by his team’s performance – they looked lethal at times with ball-in-hand and many second-choice players stood up well against a team featuring the likes of Jamie Roberts and challenging for a top-four place.

Though displeased with the result, Coventry admitted it had given his men a timely boost ahead of their must-win clash against Falcons at Kingston Park.

"We are reasonably happy and we'll take it forward into our big game next week,” the New Zealander said.

“It was a big night for us and a quarter-final appearance deserved a big performance. We did a marvellous job and we nearly achieved the win we wanted.

"They brought on some big players in that final quarter and the loss of David Paice to the sin-bin was a big momentum swing in their favour.”
 
Harlequins: Brown; Yarde, Lowe, Roberts, Visser, Botica, Care; Lambert, Gray (Ward, 45), Jones (Sinckler, 45), Merrick (Matthews, 51), Twomey, Robshaw, Wallace, Clifford Unused Replacements: Evans, Luamanu, Dickson, Marchant, Chisholm
 
London Irish: Fenby; Maitland, Mulchrone, Brophy Clews (Steele, 71), Fowlie; Geraghty, McKibbin (Allinson, 73); Smallbone (Court, 53), Paice, Halavatau (Palframan, 56), Lloyd (Curry, 77), Sinclair, Guest (Sisi, 56), Trayfoot (Ellis, 73), McCusker Unused Replacements: Cruse 

Harlequins
Tries: Wallace 2, Care 3
Conversions: Botica 2
Penalties: 3

London Irish
Tries: Mulchrone, McKibbin, Maitland
Conversions: Geraghty 3
Penalties: Geraghty 3

Attendance: 9,851
Referee: Marius Mitrea  

Watch England's finest at the Aviva Premiership Rugby Final at Twickenham on 28 May from only £30 for adults & £15 for children. Click here for tickets

Latest News

Worcester Warriors ‘unlucky’ in defeat to Wasps, says Ryan Bower

Worcester Warriors prop Ryan Bower admits it was important for his side to put in a performance against Wasps after their humbling Aviva Premiership Rugby defeat…

Photo by Tony Marshall/Getty Images

In-form Henry Purdy desperate to keep improving at Gloucester Rugby

Henry Purdy is refusing to rest on his laurels and has vowed to push on hard, despite praise from all…

Generated by  IJG JPEG Library

Max Clark the centre of attention at Bath Rugby

Back in September – just when Bath Rugby were beginning to count on him in the centres – an ill-timed…

Generated by  IJG JPEG Library

Seven tries success for Exeter Braves over Bath United

Exeter Braves’ Shaun Malton and Levi Davis of Bath United became the first opponents since 2005 to both score hat-tricks…

Generated by  IJG JPEG Library

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