Planet Rugby

Wasps stun Gloucester at the death

04th November 2007 16:52

Share:

Haskell Wasps Gloucester

Brace Yourselves: James Haskell powers over for the second of his two tries

Inspired by the return of their World Cup stars and a titanic cameo from James Haskell, London Wasps hauled themselves back from a 26-8 deficit to record a fine 29-26 victory over Gloucester in Sunday's EDF Energy Cup clash at Adams Park.

Wasps, with only one victory from their previous seven matches this season as World Cup calls decimated their playing resources, looked down and out after Gloucester scored their fourth try through wing Iain Balshaw in the 65th minute of the game.

But the introduction of a wave of replacements, including French World Cup skipper RaphaŽl Ibanez and Haskell, and the switch of talented teenager Danny Cipriani from full-back to fly-half, transformed the Heineken Cup holders.

Haskell, the most controversial absentee when England coach Brian Ashton made the final cuts to his World Cup squad, went over in the 66th and 73rd minutes for tries - both converted by Cipriani - as the Wasps pack turned the tables after being outplayed for the first hour.

A desperate tackle by Gloucester forward replacement Gareth Delve, who dived full-length to tap the ankle of England winger Paul Sackey, playing his first match since returning from the World Cup, looked to have denied Wasps their unlikely victory.

But with 20 seconds of normal time remaining, the Wasps forward drove over the Gloucester line again for the winning try, credited to second-half substitute John Hart.

Hart was the 61st-minute replacement for skipper Lawrence Dallaglio who was withdrawn before Wasps launched their fightback.

Dallaglio, embroiled in controversy for his scathing attack on England coach Ashton since arriving back from the World Cup, was signing copies of his autobiography in the club shop after the match.

But he had failed to make his mark on the Wasps pack which came of decidedly second best for much of the game.

Gloucester, who took the lead when scrum-half Rory Lawson wrong-footed the home defence with a delightful dummy which took him past Wasps fly-half Riki Flutey, struck again in the 34th minute.

A spell of forward pressure resulted in hooker Olivier Azam forcing his way over for their second try, with fly-half Ryan Lamb again converting to put them 14-0 ahead.

World Cup referee Wayne Barnes, who failed to spot a French forward pass as New Zealand were knocked out of the World cup, did not endear himself to the Wasps supporters.

He disallowed a 10th-minute Sackey try because of an earlier infringement and then denied Tom Voyce by awarding a penalty instead of allowing the advantage.

Cipriani kicked the penalty in first-half injury time but Wasps looked dead and buried early in the second half.

The Gloucester number eight Luke Narraway was stopped inches short of the tryline after bursting through the middle, once again exposing the frailties of the normally so-solid Wasps defence.

But the ball was moved quickly out wide with Lamb and James Simpson-Daniel combining to send full-back Olly Morgan over in the right-hand corner for a try which Lamb converted.

Voyce rushed a tackle from Simpson-Daniel to score Wasps' opening try in the 53rd minute but Gloucester struck again when Anthony Allen and Morgan set up Balshaw's 61st-minute try to stretch their lead to 26-8.

The yellow card which dispatched Gloucester second-row man Peter Buxton to the sin-bin for the final 10 minutes proved decisive as Wasps utilised their extra-man advantage to the full to complete a remarkable turnaround.

Their bonus-point victory puts them level at the top of Pool A with Newcastle Falcons, with the group decider to be played at Wasps' Adams Park Ground on the last weekend in November.

The scorers:

For London Wasps:

Tries: Voyce, Hart, Haskell 2

Cons: Cipriani 3

Pens: Cipriani

For Gloucester:

Tries: Morgan, Azam, Lawson, Balshaw

Cons: Lamb 3

London Wasps: 15 Danny Cipriani, 14 Paul Sackey, 13 Fraser Waters, 12 Rob Hoadley, 11 Tom Voyce, 10 Riki Flutey, 9 Eoin Reddan, 8 Lawrence Dallaglio, 7 Tom Rees, 6 Dan Leo, 5 Richard Birkett, 4 George Skivington, 3 Nick Adams, 2 Joe Ward, 1 Tim Payne.

Replacements: 16 RaphaŽl IbaŮez, 17 Michael Holford, 18 John Hart, 19 James Haskell, 20 Simon Amor, 21 Dave Walder, 22 Mark Van Gisbergen.

Gloucester: 15 Olly Morgan, 14 Iain Balshaw, 13 James Simpson-Daniel, 12 Mike Tindall, 11 Mark Foster, 10 Ryan Lamb, 9 Gareth Cooper, 8 Luke Narraway, 7 Akapusi Qera, 6 Alasdair Strokosch, 5 Alex Brown, 4 Peter Buxton, 3 Carlos Nieto, 2 Olivier Azam, 1 Nick Wood.

Replacements: 16 Andy Titterrell, 17 Patrice Collazo, 18 Will James, 19 Gareth Delve, 20 Rory Lawson, 21 Chris Paterson, 22 Anthony Allen.

Referee: Wayne Barnes (England)

Touch judges: Andrew Watson (England), Ken Stewart (England)

Television match official: Bob Ockenden (England)

Forthcoming Fixtures
FixtureDetails
All times are local
Aviva Premiership
Saturday , November 29
Leicester Tigers vs WaspsLeicester Tigers vs Wasps Preview
Exeter vs SaracensExeter vs Saracens Preview
Sunday , November 30
London Irish vs GloucesterLondon Irish vs Gloucester Preview
London Welsh vs NorthamptonLondon Welsh vs Northampton Preview
Newcastle Falcons vs Sale SharksNewcastle Falcons vs Sale Sharks Preview
More Aviva Premiership fixtures
International Match
Saturday , November 29
Wales vs South AfricaWales vs South Africa Preview
England vs AustraliaEngland vs Australia Preview
More International Match fixtures
European Rugby Champions Cup
Friday , December 5
Montpellier vs Bath19:45
More European Rugby Champions Cup fixtures
Guinness PRO12
Saturday , November 29
Zebre vs EdinburghZebre vs Edinburgh Preview
Leinster vs OspreysLeinster vs Ospreys Preview
Connacht vs ScarletsConnacht vs Scarlets Preview
Sunday , November 30
Glasgow Warriors vs DragonsGlasgow Warriors vs Dragons Preview
More Guinness PRO12 fixtures
European Rugby Challenge Cup
Thursday , December 4
La Rochelle vs Exeter19:45
Friday , December 5
Brive vs Oyonnax18:30
Grenoble vs Rovigo18:30
Newcastle vs Stade Francais20:00
More European Rugby Challenge Cup fixtures
Top 14
Saturday , November 29
Toulon vs Clermont AuvergneToulon vs Clermont Auvergne Preview
Oyonnax vs Bordeaux-Begles18:30
La Rochelle vs Bayonne18:30
Castres vs Racing Metro Paris18:30
Lyon vs Montpellier18:30
Toulouse vs Grenoble20:45
Sunday , November 30
Stade Francais vs Brive18:00
More Top 14 fixtures
Recent Results
FixtureDetails
All times are local
Aviva Premiership
Friday , November 28
Bath 25 - 6 HarlequinsBath vs Harlequins Report
More Aviva Premiership results
Guinness PRO12
Cardiff Blues 36 - 25 TrevisoCardiff Blues vs Treviso Report
Munster 21 - 20 UlsterMunster vs Ulster Report
More Guinness PRO12 results
Aviva Premiership
Sunday , November 23
Saracens 24 - 31 NorthamptonSaracens vs Northampton Report
London Welsh 5 - 26 Leicester TigersLondon Welsh vs Leicester Tigers Report
More Aviva Premiership results
International Match
Georgia 35 - 24 JapanGeorgia vs Japan Report
More International Match results
Guinness PRO12
Treviso 24 - 24 LeinsterTreviso vs Leinster Report
Edinburgh 28 - 13 Cardiff BluesEdinburgh vs Cardiff Blues Report
More Guinness PRO12 results
Aviva Premiership
Saturday , November 22
London Irish 23 - 33 BathLondon Irish vs Bath Report
Exeter 31 - 15 WaspsExeter vs Wasps Report
More Aviva Premiership results
International Match
Italy 6 - 22 South AfricaItaly vs South Africa Report
Romania 18 - 9 CanadaRomania vs Canada Report
Wales 16 - 34 New ZealandWales vs New Zealand Report
France 13 - 18 ArgentinaFrance vs Argentina Report
England 28 - 9 SamoaEngland vs Samoa Report
Scotland 37 - 12 TongaScotland vs Tonga Report
Ireland 26 - 23 AustraliaIreland vs Australia Report
More International Match results
Aviva Premiership
Friday , November 21
Harlequins 12 - 16 Sale SharksHarlequins vs Sale Sharks Report
Newcastle Falcons 20 - 10 GloucesterNewcastle Falcons vs Gloucester Report
More Aviva Premiership results
International Match
Fiji 20 - 14 USAFiji vs USA Report
More International Match results
Guinness PRO12
Dragons 12 - 38 MunsterDragons vs Munster Report
Ulster 25 - 16 OspreysUlster vs Ospreys Report
Connacht 43 - 3 ZebreConnacht vs Zebre Report
Scarlets 19 - 9 Glasgow WarriorsScarlets vs Glasgow Warriors Report
More Guinness PRO12 results
Aviva Premiership
Sunday , November 16
Leicester Tigers 21 - 21 SaracensLeicester Tigers vs Saracens Report
More Aviva Premiership results
Aviva Premiership Table
PosTeamPPts
1Bath933
2Northampton830
3Exeter828
4Saracens825
5Leicester Tigers821