Aviva Premiership: Harlequins battled to away win at Leicester

Last Updated: 02/11/13 9:46pm

  • Share:

Sky Bet

Harlequins maintained their status as Leicester Tigers' bogey team by chalking up a fourth win in six visits to Welford Road.

Quins thoroughly deserved their 23-16 success after dominating the Aviva Premiership champions for much of the game and scoring two tries, through former England No.8 Nick Easter and centre Matt Hopper.

Full-back Nick Evans converted both and also kicked three penalties, while Leicester scored a penalty try in the 80th minute, which was converted by fly-half Owen Williams who also kicked three penalties for the Tigers.

Harlequins' win meant they leapfrogged Leicester in the table and will lead to much soul searching at the Tigers who have now won just one of their past five matches in all competitions.

Errors

Harlequins, fresh from a win over Sale which ended a four-match losing run, dominated the first half and turned around with a 10-6 lead which could easily have been more but for a glut of errors which ruined promising build-up play.

At one point they had conceded nine penalties to Leicester's one, forcing referee Tim Wigglesworth to warn captain Easter about their future conduct.

Those penalties allowed Leicester to take a 6-0 lead but Harlequins' better play was eventually rewarded with a try under the posts by Easter in time added on.

Leicester had the benefit of a strong, swirling wind in the first half and Welsh fly-half Williams took full advantage by drilling two long-range penalties straight between the posts in the eighth and 18th minutes. He was also close with a third.

Quins twice turned down shots at goal because of the wind and went for the lineout and drive option but failed to take advantage due to their poor execution, not the least dropped passes.

Such was Harlequins' dominance that it took Leicester 28 minutes to get into the visitors' 22, and that was thanks to a long clearance by flanker Julian Salvi.

Leicester failed to take advantage and after Evans had put Quins back in the game with a 37th-minute penalty, the full-back almost scored in the left corner but was denied by some great scrambling defence by the Tigers.

Leicester won the line-out but conceded a scrum and Quins, for once, took advantage of a strong attacking position when Easter drove over from close range, with Evans slotting the conversion.

Darted

Harlequins made a strong start to the second half and after fly-half Ben Botica missed a long-range penalty, centre Hopper cut inside off the left wing and darted under the posts, with Evans adding the conversion.

That put Quins 17-6 ahead, which soon became 17-9 after Williams kicked his third penalty.

With a 24,000 sell-out crown finding their voice, the Tigers suddenly discovered another gear and Harlequins found themselves under pressure after a clearance kick was charged down.

But Leicester failed to change the scoreboard and when Quins broke out of defence they won a penalty in the Leicester 22 and Evans made it 20-9.

In the 73rd minute the Kiwi kicked his third penalty to make it 23-9 but Leicester hit back with a penalty try, converted by Williams, in the final minute.

  • Share:

Related

Aviva Premiership 2013/14 Round Seven

James O'Connor: Produced an excellent debut for London Irish

O'Connor surprised by speed

James O'Connor conceded the pace of the Aviva Premiership had taken him by surprise after his debut for London Irish.

Mark McCall: Delighted with Saracens victory

McCall praises Sarries spirit

Saracens boss Mark McCall says his Premiership produced a 'complete performance' in beating Newcastle at Allianz Park.

Matt Stevens of Saracens against the Newcastle Falcons in the Aviva Premiership

Sarries go back on top

Saracens remained on top of the Aviva Premiership table after a convincing 40-3 victory over Newcastle on Sunday.

Most Popular

Features

Hoddle: Arsenal must strengthen

Hoddle: Arsenal must strengthen

Glenn Hoddle says Arsenal need to sign another defensive player to challenge for trophies.

Beefy hails Hales

Beefy hails Hales

Sir Ian Botham backs Alex Hales to make a huge impact in England's five-match ODI series with India

US Open preview

US Open preview

Tim Clement offers up his in-depth preview of the US Open and reveals who he is backing.