Imagine Rugby Blogs
Imagine Rugby Bloggers
Three in a Row for Quins
Unbeaten run continues with fine performance
Posted Sep 20, 2011 by Chris White
Send to a friend
Harlequins moved to the top of the Aviva Premiership table with a dominant display against Gloucester at the Twickenham Stoop, as previous leaders Exeter suffered their first defeat of the new season.
Quins dominated the match from start to finish and ran in five tries to secure the bonus point and make it three wins from three matches this season. Gloucester went into an early lead when Freddie Burns made the most of a penalty, but the lead was short-lived as Sam Smith went over in the corner and Luke Wallace made his way across the whitewash for a second try as the home side went in 18-6 ahead at the break. Further tries from Ugo Monye, Chris Brooker and a second from Wallace ensured the bonus point to give Quins a 42-6 victory.
Exeter had started the new campaign in fine form, winning both of their opening matches and leading the early Premiership table, but they suffered their first defeat at Bath, going down 23-19. Dan Hipkiss produced the standout moment in a scrappy game, sprinting from the halfway line to touch down, before Nathan Catt added a second, both of which were converted by Sam Vesty, who also added three penalties for the home side. A penalty try was awarded to the visitors in the dying moments to claim a point, but despite four penalties and a conversion from Ignacio Mieres, Bath clung on for the win.
At Adams Park, Sale Sharks continued their good start to the new season with a 29-18 win against Wasps. Fly half Nick Macleod kicked 19 points for the visitors having taken over the kicking duties from the departed Charlie Hodgson. Wasps went ahead when ex-Sale centre Chris Bell finished off a good attacking move from the home side, but the boot of Macleod and then a Fraser McKenzie try put the visitors into a strong position, going into the break 19-10 up. David Seymour added a second try for Sale and although Ryan Davis added a late try it was too little too late.
London Irish were the latest to stutter Northampton’s start to the new season, coming away from Franklin’s Gardens narrow victors, edging the 27-pointer 14-13 thanks to a late penalty from Tom Homer. Nick Kennedy went over in the corner for Irish early in the second half, and although Saints converted a penalty try, they couldn’t respond to Homer’s third penalty of the match.
Leicester edged out Newcastle in a 27-26 thriller at Kingston Park, with Steve Mafi going over late on for the decisive try as Jimmy Gopperth missed a last minute drop-goal attempt to give the Tigers their first win of the season.
The weekend’s action finished with last year’s champions Saracens running out resounding 18-6 winners against newly promoted Worcester. Tries from David Strettle and a controversial touchdown from Brad Barritt – who appeared to be short of the line – and 8 points from the boot of Charlie Hodgson ensured the victory as Sarries dominated proceedings at Vicarage Road. Andy Goode kicked all 6 points for the Warriors.