Planet Rugby

Quins edge Exiles at Twickenham

03rd September 2011 15:56

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james johnston harlequins try 2011

Over the line: James Johnston

Harlequins got the 2011/12 Aviva Premiership off and running with a come-from-behind 29-24 win over London Irish at HQ on Saturday.

The game started with both sides swapping penalties. Nick Evans was on target for Quins but Tom Homer quickly responded in kind.

Quins then got the first try of the game when prop forward James Johnston crashed over from short range. Evans converted to make it 3-10.

Homer then missed the chance to reduce the deficit for the Exiles when he missed a penalty but he was on target soon after as Joe Marler was shown the yellow card.

Evans added another penalty for Quins to make it 6-13, before Ugo Monye went close to scoring a try.

The Exiles threatened too but Keiran Roche fumbled the ball with the line begging meaning that seven points remained between the sides at half-time. That deficit was cancelled out entirely just a minute to the second half when Topsy Ojo hared down the right wing to score. Homer converted and it was game on.

Quins retook the lead shortly after through an Evans penalty, but Ojo struck again and crossed for a second try after the visitors failed to deal with the restart. Homer missed the conversion and the Exiles led 18-16 But the visitors retook the lead through an Evans penalty before the fly-half's looping pass sent in Monye for his second try, given after consultation with the video referee. Evans added the conversion to make it 18-26 to Quins.

The two sides then exchanged further penalties, Homer adding another with time running out, but it wasn't enough as Quins held on for a great opening day win.

The scorers:

For London Irish:
Tries: Ojo 2
Con: Homer
Pen: Homer 4

For Harlequins:
Tries: Johnston, Monye
Con: Evans 2
Pen: Evans 5

London Irish: 15 Tom Homer, 14 Topsy Ojo, 13 Jonathan Joseph, 12 Daniel Bowden (capt), 11 Marland Yarde, 10 Adrian Jarvis, 9 Paul Hodgson, 8 Chris Hala'ufia, 7 Richard Thorpe, 6 Kieran Roche, 5 Matt Garvey, 4 Nick Kennedy, 3 Faan Rautenbach, 2 David Paice, 1 Max Lahiff.
Replacements: 16 James Buckland, 17 Clarke Dermody, 18 Leo Halavatau, 19 James Sandford, 20 Alex Gray, 21 Adam Thompstone, 22 Steve Shingler, 23 Darren Allinson.

Harlequins: 15 Mike Brown, 14 Ross Chisholm, 13 George Lowe, 12 Jordan Turner-Hall, 11 Ugo Monye, 10 Nick Evans, 9 Karl Dickson. 8 Tom Guest, 7 Will Skinner, 6 Chris Robshaw (capt), 5 George Robson, 4 Ollie Kohn, 3 James Johnston, 2 Joe Gray, 1 Joe Marler.
Replacements: 16 Chris Brooker, 17 Mark Lambert, 18 Tim Fairbrother, 19 Charlie Matthews, 20 Chris York, 21 Richard Bolt, 22 Rory Clegg, 23 Sam Smith.

Referee: Greg Gardner

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