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Match Reaction: Gloucester Rugby 47 London Irish 7

Match Reaction: Gloucester Rugby 47 London Irish 7

Gloucester Rugby flexed their muscle with an emphatic 47-7 win against London Irish in the Anglo-Welsh Cup to secure their first win in this year’s competition.

The hosts selected a strong and experienced side at Kingsholm and it paid off, even though they had to wait more than 20 minutes for the first points of the match.

Scrum half Willi Heinz got the breakthrough and the hosts scored two further first-half tries through Val Rapava Ruskin and Tom Hudson.

Irish got one back after the break through Ollie Hoskins but Gloucester found another gear again towards the end of the match as Jeremy Thrush, Henry Trinder, Callum Braley and Jake Polledri all crossed.

MAN OF THE MATCH

While Gloucester’s team made the headlines for its experience and big-name players, it was Jake Polledri who perhaps caught the eye the most.

The exciting backrow staked his claim for a first-team spot on a weekly basis, displaying strong ball-carrying and ferocious tackling at the breakdown.

He capped his afternoon off with a well-taken try near the end of the contest.

TRY OF THE MATCH

All of Gloucester’s magnificent seven tries are contenders here but Polledri’s sticks out.

The academy star showed strength and speed to burst clear from 40 metres and finish off a flowing team move.

WHAT THEY SAID

Gloucester’s backs coach Tim Taylor felt vindicated with the decision to pick a strong side: “It’s a tough one because you either give the boys two weeks off or you get them in and give them a bit of game time today in prep for next week as well,” he said.

“Fortunately we didn’t pick up any injuries which is a good sign but the great thing about our squad at the moment is whoever plays and is not playing buys in 100 per cent and backs it.

“It’s so important that every game we go out to win but it’s going to be a tough challenge on Friday night but important that the boys recover well and prepare well on Monday.”

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