Match Reaction: Gloucester Rugby 36 London Wasps 5
Gloucester Rugby forwards coach Andrew Stanley has urged his side to build on their 36-5 LV= Cup victory over London Wasps and replicate that performance in the Aviva Premiership.
Stanley saw his charges dominate this cup fixture, taking advantage of the conditions to blow Wasps away in the first-half and outscore them playing into the wind after the break.
Returning centre Henry Trinder and flanker Matt Cox did the damage with two tries apiece, while Ryan Mills enjoyed an impressive outing at fly-half for the Cherry & Whites after a long injury lay-off.
And Dan Murphy came off the bench to add a fifth try late on, rounding off a one-sided win – much to Stanley’s satisfaction.
“I think the boys went out and enjoyed themselves today,” he said. “In the first half we got off to a very quick start with the conditions in our favour, but we kept the ball well, kept our shape, and got the rewards.
“One of the goals we set ourselves is to maintain the impetus we’ve gathered over the past few weeks, and that was the goal we set the boys for all aspects of our play, to keep the intensity and passion and that showed up in both attack and defence.
“We talked at half-time about playing into a very stiff breeze but we just wanted to keep ball and keep them out of our territory for as long as possible and the longer the game went on and changes were made we were able to do that for longer and longer periods.
“He [Ryan Mills] slotted in really well which is something Ryan has done before after a long injury he’s come back and been able to perform at a good level straight away and he and Henry I thought coming back from injury did really well.
“We’re delighted with today’s performance but we’ve got to knuckle down and start getting ourselves ready for Sale on Friday night.”
In contrast Wasps attack coach Stephen Jones didn’t hold back in his criticism of his players, after a limp showing in what was effectively a dead rubber with neither side able to progress from their pools.
Only Ashley Johnson, who crossed from close range, got on the scoreboard for the visitors as they suffered only their second defeat in their last ten games.
“It was a pretty poor performance from us across the board,” said Jones. “We were unrecognisable from the team we have been in the last three months and that is a huge frustration and disappointment for everyone involved. It’s as simple as that.
“Our continuity was poor today. We did ask questions and we got a little bit of reward but we then turned the ball over and that is a huge frustration. We need to build ourselves into a game, especially when playing at home and we didn’t do that.
“Gloucester played very well – they played smart, they put us under a lot of pressure, played in the right areas, took advantage of their opportunities and we were up against it early doors. I have to look at things from our point of view and we weren’t as accurate as we have been, we weren’t as efficient in our play and those are the things that we have to work on.
“There were some other good individual performances in the team, the likes of Sam Jones who you can always rely on and some impressive bits of play from Ashley Johnson but we need everyone to be pulling in the same direction and a team performance is what we need, especially in the next four weeks with some big games coming up.”
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Gloucester Rugby: Cook, Thomas, Trinder (Meakes, 40), Tindall, Monahan, Mills (Evans L, 67), Knoyle (Cowan, 55), Wood (Murphy, 50), Britton (George, 40), Harden (Knight, 50), James, Hudson (Hicks, 60), Kalamafoni, Cox (Underhill, 67), Evans G
London Wasps: Bell T, Howe, Masi (Hayter, 50), Bell C, Bassett, Carlisle, Davies (Sheehan, 50), Reeves (McIntyre, 53), Festuccia (Davis, 56), Swainston (Vea, 56), Lozado, Cannon (Myall, 53), Johnson, Jones, Pitman (Everard, 58)
Replacements not used: Helu
Tries: Trinder 13, 16, Cox 19, 58, Murphy 72
Conversions: Cook 17, 20, 60, 74
Penalties: Cook 40
Tries: Johnson 23
Referee: Greg MacDonald