Planet Rugby

Exiles sweep Bristol aside

30th March 2008 16:57

Share:

Stuart Mackie Rob Higgitt London Irish Bristol

Try Time: Stuart Mackie dots down

London Irish limbered up for next week's Heineken Cup encounter with Perpignan by recording a well-worked 28-8 Premiership victory over Bristol at the Madejski Stadium on Sunday.

But the Exiles remain in eighth place in the domestic table after successive defeats at the hands of Gloucester, Wasps and Bath effectively killed off their hopes of a top four play-off place.

London Irish full-back Peter Hewat, restored to kicking duties after Irish had costly misses in the setbacks against Wasps and Bath, scored a try, three penalties and two conversions.

The other Irish tries came from hooker Stuart Mackie and centre Seilala Mapusua.

Bristol replied with a first-half penalty from fly-half Ed Barnes and a late try from right-wing Tom Arscott.

England scrum-half Shaun Perry, back in the Bristol side after the throat injury which forced him to miss the Six Nations, worked hard to get the visitors moving but they seldom posed a threat in attack.

Paul Hodgson, called into the England squad during Perry's absence, had the better day, combining well with veteran fly-half Mike Catt, the steadying influence who dictated play for Irish.

Hewat's opening 13th-minute penalty for Irish was cancelled out by Barnes before the home side broke the early deadlock with a try in the 23rd minute, inspired by winger Topsy Ojo whose pace was a constant problem for Bristol.

Ojo made the initial break and figured three more times in an attack which saw lock Nick Kennedy hauled down just short of the Bristol line before the winger supplied the final pass to put Mackie over from close range.

Hewat converted and landed a second penalty to send Irish in 13-3 ahead at half-time.

Bristol's problems increased in the 49th minute when prop forward Jason Hobson was punished with 10 minutes in the sin bin for blatantly obstructing Hodgson during a promising Irish attack and Hewat kicked the resulting penalty, his third success from four attempts.

While Hobson was off the field, Irish stretched their lead after Hodgson kicked ahead down the right and Hewat won the race to touch down.

With victory almost certainly secured Irish withdrew Catt, with the Heineken Cup in mind, replacing him with Eoghan Hickey as they made a raft of substitutions.

Hewat linked up in attack again to draw the Bristol defence and lay on his side's third try for Mapusua in the 65th minute.

There was an unusual substitution in the 74th minute when referee Dave Pearson limped off to be replaced by fourth official John Dennison.

With the game beyond their reach Bristol produced their most productive period of the match.

A series of attacks had Irish defending desperately but they finally cracked when Bristol's Arscott raced over for a 78th-minute try in the right-hand corner.

The scorers:

For London Irish:

Tries: Mackie, Hewat, Mapusua

Cons: Hewat 2

Pens: Hewat 3

For Bristol:

Tries: T Arscott

Pens: Barnes

The Teams:

London Irish: 15 Peter Hewat, 14 Topsy Ojo, 13 Gonzalo Tiesi, 12 Seilala Mapusua, 11 Sailosi Tagicakibau, 10 Mike Catt, 9 Paul Hodgson, 8 Richard Thorpe, 7 Steffon Armitage, 6 Declan Danaher, 5 Bob Casey (c), 4 Nick Kennedy, 3 Faan Rautenbach, 2 Stuart Mackie, 1 Tonga Lea'aetoa.

Replacements: 16 Dan Murphy, 17 James Clark, 18 James Hudson, 19 Gary Johnson, 20 Juan Manuel Leguizamon, 21 Warren Fury, 22 Eoghan Hickey.

Bristol: 15 Luke Arscott, 14 Tom Arscott, 13 Rob Higgitt, 12 Neil Brew, 11 David Lemi, 10 Ed Barnes, 9 Shaun Perry, 8 Dan Ward-Smith, 7 Joe El Abd (c), 6 Iain Grieve, 5 Sean Hohneck, 4 Nathan Budgett, 3 Jason Hobson, 2 Mark Regan, 1 Darren Crompton.

Replacements: 16 Scott Linklater, 17 Peter Bracken, 18 Mariano Sambucetti, 19 Redford Pennycook, 20 Haydn Thomas, 21 Jason Strange, 22 Luke Eves.

Referee: Dave Pearson

Touch judges: Andy Watson, Paul Emerson

Television match official: John Burtenshaw

Forthcoming Fixtures
FixtureDetails
All times are local
Aviva Premiership
Friday , November 28
Bath vs Harlequins19:45
Saturday , November 29
Leicester Tigers vs Wasps15:00
Exeter vs Saracens16:30
Sunday , November 30
London Irish vs Gloucester13:00
London Welsh vs Northampton14:30
Newcastle Falcons vs Sale Sharks15:15
More Aviva Premiership fixtures
International Match
Saturday , November 29
Wales vs South Africa14:30
England vs Australia14:30
More International Match fixtures
Guinness PRO12
Friday , November 28
Munster vs Ulster19:35
Cardiff Blues vs Treviso19:35
Saturday , November 29
Zebre vs Edinburgh15:00
Leinster vs Ospreys17:15
Connacht vs Scarlets19:30
Sunday , November 30
Glasgow Warriors vs Dragons16:00
More Guinness PRO12 fixtures
Top 14
Saturday , November 29
Toulon vs Clermont Auvergne14:45
Oyonnax vs Bordeaux-Begles18:30
Lyon vs Montpellier18:30
La Rochelle vs Bayonne18:30
Castres vs Racing Metro Paris18:30
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
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
England 28 - 9 SamoaEngland vs Samoa Report
France 13 - 18 ArgentinaFrance vs Argentina Report
Wales 16 - 34 New ZealandWales vs New Zealand Report
Scotland 37 - 12 TongaScotland vs Tonga Report
Ireland 26 - 23 AustraliaIreland vs Australia Report
Romania 18 - 9 CanadaRomania vs Canada 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
Wasps 71 - 7 London WelshWasps vs London Welsh Report
More Aviva Premiership results
International Match
Ireland 49 - 7 GeorgiaIreland vs Georgia Report
More International Match results
Aviva Premiership
Saturday , November 15
Sale Sharks 36 - 8 London IrishSale Sharks vs London Irish Report
More Aviva Premiership results
Aviva Premiership Table
PosTeamPPts
1Northampton830
2Exeter828
3Bath828
4Saracens825
5Leicester Tigers821