Irish seal bonus point win
Sarries made to suffer for sin-binning at Twickenham
Last Updated: 04/09/10 5:34pm
Irish: Convnicing win
London Irish took full advantage of Alex Goode's sin-binning to inflict a 33-16 defeat on Saracens in their Aviva Premiership clash at Twickenham on Saturday.
Saracens, who had dominated the first half, were made to pay dearly during the second, as the Exiles notched up 15 points in the wake of Goode's departure soon after half time.
Irish began the brighter side in a bruising opening 10 minutes but it was Sarries who broke the deadlock with a piece of brilliance in the 25th minute.
A superb offload by hooker Schalk Brits found Chris Wyles who slipped a pass behind his back to Ernst Joubert for the South African to canter in.
Goode missed the conversion to leave the score on 5-0 and Ryan Lamb pulled three back with a penalty on 28 minutes.
But, after just five minutes more, Saracens had their second when a blistering break from the back of the scrum by Joubert ended with Brits barging over from five yards.
Goode again failed to convert and another penalty from Lamb on 33 minutes kept Irish in touch to take them into half-time trailing 10-6.
The second half began with Irish piling pressure onto Sarries line and when an offside Goode was dispatched after palming Lamb's pass to safety they rammed home the advantage.
Lamb added three to close the gap to a single point with the resulting penalty, and when Steffon Armitage's missed pass found his brother Delon, the full back needed little encouragement to run in for the Exiles' first try.
Man of the match Armitage, who had spent 10 minutes in the sin-bin himself for a high tackle during the first half, crossed in the corner on 50 minutes to put his side into a 14-10 lead.
Lamb could not find the target with his touchline kick but three minutes later he launched a crossfield bomb that winger Sailosi Tagicakibau collected for an easy run-in.
This time the former Gloucester fly-half converted to extend Irish's lead to 21-10 but straight from the restart Derick Hougaard, on at fly-half, slotted a penalty to close the gap.
Irish lost Paul Hodgson to the sin-bin for a deliberate knock-on in the 63rd minute and Hodgson added three more with the penalty to keep his side in touch.
But with just six minutes to go their hopes were dashed when Irish were awarded a penalty try after replacement scrum-half Kevin Barrett was sin-binned for pushing Topsy Ojo in a scoring position.
Lamb converted from in front of the past and minutes later Irish completed the rout when Ojo crossed in the corner again.
Lamb missed the conversionh but that won't worry the Exiles, who opened their Premiership account in convincing style with a bonus point win.