Match Reaction: Worcester Warriors 20-21 Wasps
Wasps have now won nine in a row against Worcester Warriors in Gallagher Premiership Rugby, but they had to do it the hard way in this dramatic season opener at Sixways.
The Warriors burst into an early lead thanks to the boot of Duncan Weir and Ryan Mills’ early try.
But the visitors fought back through Billy Searle’s goal-kicking and tries for Joe Launchbury and Tommy Taylor.
And while Sam Lewis scored in the second half for Worcester, it was a late Searle penalty that proved enough as Wasps repelled a furious late Warriors surge for the narrowest of victories.
MAN OF THE MATCH
Billy Searle’s late penalty won Wasps the match but it was a captain’s performance from Joe Launchbury that won the day for Wasps.
He scored a rare try to get his side back into the game in the first half, powered a strong pack effort after the break and marshalled a fine late defensive effort to secure the victory.
What a finish! 👏
— Premiership Rugby (@premrugby) September 1, 2018
MOMENT OF THE MATCH
Dan Robson’s quick thinking set up Taylor for Wasps’ second try.
The scrum-half tapped and went down the left wing as Wasps ramped up the pressure and then produced a stunning offload while being pushed into touch to put Taylor over.
TRY OF THE MATCH
They might have lost the match in the end, but Sam Lewis’ fine second-half score was a joy to behold for the Warriors faithful at Sixways.
The flanker collected a loose ball with his back to the try line on the left wing but turned on a sixpence and powered through a gap for an impressive solo score.
Not the most convincing game but we snuck it. First game is always a tough one. Onwards and upwards. @WaspsRugby
— Joe Simpson (@joesimpson9) September 1, 2018
WHAT THEY SAID
Wasps director of rugby Dai Young:
“We had a poor start but I don’t want to take anything away from Worcester, I thought they were really good for the first 20 minutes and were by far the better team.
“We got back into contention by half-time, we edged our way back into it through the second half and hung in there right at the end.
“Both teams were probably a little bit rusty and we knew it was going to be a tough game, but I’m really pleased we found a way to win and really pleased with the attitude.
“If you would have given me a one-point win before the game, I would have accepted it. The first game is always tough and Worcester put out their best team on paper.
Worcester director of rugby Alan Solomons:
“I thought that game was a really good performance from us but you have to look at it in context. During the course of the game, we lost players and we had Jono Lance playing on the flank and we had to deal with 14 men with Foti (Alafoti Faosiliva, who was sin-binned) off.
BEST OF SOCIAL
🎥 MATCH REACTION Dai Young on today’s win against Worcester Warriors pic.twitter.com/O715ILDex7
— Wasps Rugby (@WaspsRugby) September 1, 2018
— Billy Searle (@Searly10) September 1, 2018
— Charlie Matthews (@CMatthews5) September 1, 2018
And we are out of the gate with a W. Wins a win @WaspsRugby lessssgooooooo
— Lima Sopoaga (@LimaSopoaga) September 1, 2018
🎥 “It was fantastic to get back out there but I’m disappointed we haven’t got the win.”
— Worcester Warriors ⚔️ (@WorcsWarriors) September 1, 2018
Thank you for the kind words. Not the outcome we wanted today but the boys put in big effort. Back to the drawing board next week 👍🏼 https://t.co/KLPkrgG5ta
— Francois Hougaard (@Francoishougi) September 1, 2018