Conor O'Shea will not blame Nick Evans for Harlequins' defeat

Last Updated: 15/09/13 5:17pm

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Nick Evans missed some chances at Twickenham Stoop

Nick Evans missed some chances at Twickenham Stoop

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Director of rugby Conor O'Shea refused to criticise Nick Evans after Harlequins lost 13-6 at home to Premiership rivals Northampton.

Evans missed four of his six attempts at goal on a rain-swept night at Twickenham Stoop but O'Shea said the former New Zealand fly-half had just been unlucky.

"You get the bounce of the ball one day, you don't the next," said O'Shea. "We move on and forget it. Nick wins so many games for this club.

"We brought Ben Botica on and he hit the posts but, if we play like that week in week out, we'll be fine. We just have to take our chances and we had enough.

"It's disappointing because I thought we played some really good rugby in horrific conditions but we didn't get the rewards.

"I said to the boys, even before the game, this doesn't define your season.

"Northampton will be really pleased with the win, as they should be. We'll get ourselves ready for Worcester next week."

Northampton director of rugby Jim Mallinder thought the victory was important considering both sides could find themselves in the Premiership title race this season.

"To come away to somewhere like this and win is an outstanding result," he said.

"It was a horrible Friday night and Harlequins are quite rightly serious contenders for the Premiership. To come here and beat them is significant.

"I'm very pleased. It was always going to be tight and it was a question of getting your set piece right.

"Stephen Myler kicked well and then we got our try-scoring opportunity and took it (James Wilson scoring in the 63rd minute)."

Mallinder revealed that England lock Courtney Lawes suffered a shoulder injury but added: "I hope it's not serious."

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