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Match Report: Wasps 42 Harlequins 10

28 Feb 2016
Match Report: Wasps 42 Harlequins 10

Wasps marched back into the top four of the Aviva Premiership Rugby table with a six-try win over Harlequins at the Ricoh Arena.

Dai Young's side scored three tries in each half, with Jimmy Gopperth enjoying a fine afternoon with the boot, to push Wasps up to third in the table,

With little separating the sides ahead of kick-off, the tense atmosphere was apparent, as both teams made early unforced handling errors.

The home side began to exert pressure onto the Harlequins defence, as a series of lineouts, deep in the visitors’ territory kept the momentum firmly with Wasps.

That continued pressure led to Wasps taking the lead when Jake Cooper-Woolley picked the ball deep into the Quins’ 22, and sneaked himself over the line, for the first score of the game, with Gopperth adding the conversion.

Straight from kick-off, a break led to good field position for Young’s side and after a series of phases, neat handling allowed Christian Wade to dance around the defence to touch down, with Gopperth making no mistake, adding the extra points.

Harlequins needed a response and they got that moments later, as Luke Wallace seemingly forced himself over the whitewash on the end of a driving maul, with the video judge confirming the try, though the extra points were missed.

The Londoners were however the architects of their own downfall, as no sooner they had got themselves back into the game, Wasps responded with a third try.

Wade’s speed would once again cause the Quins defence nightmares as he broke into the opposition half and the momentum allowed Wasps to gain ground and see Nathan Hughes touch down.

Gopperth was successful once again with the conversion, as Wasps went into the break in full control for a 21-5 lead.  

Harlequins needed an early response in the second half but once again, errors in good positions thwarted any momentum, as they pushed to get back into the game.

Conor O’Shea’s side finally got their noses back in the game, when the ball was played across the Wasps 22, where Charlie Walker was waiting to pile over in the corner for the try with the conversion again missed.

Wasps were responding to everything that the away side were throwing at them and extended their lead when Thomas Young went over for a fine try, which was finally awarded after a lengthy look from the video referee.

Gopperth added the extra points to maintain his 100 percent record with the boot as the home side edged 18 points in front, 28-10.

Wasps were now looking to put the tie to bed as Charles Piutau raced clear to add their fifth try, as a shell-shocked Quins were now looking to avoid a demoralising thumping, as Gopperth piled on the points with another conversion.

Both teams made changes to personnel but the Wasps pressure continued in the dying moments as they looked for their sixth try, which duly came as a Frank Halai break saw the ball offloaded to Brendan Macken who went over with sub Alex Lozowski rounding out the scoring. 

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