Chiefs storm the Stoop

Date published: February 21 2015

Exeter Chiefs moved into the Aviva Premiership top-four following a deserved 32-21 triumph over Harlequins at the Twickenham Stoop.

Conor O'Shea's men went into an 8-0 lead through Nick Evans' try and penalty, but the West Country outfit responded via Ben White's touchdown and two Henry Slade three-pointers.

Although Evans kicked two more from tee, Exeter's stand-off added 16 points to give the visitors a commanding 29-14 advantage.

Matt Hopper did cross the whitewash late on for Quins, but Slade scored another from the tee to secure the win and send the away side into the play-off places.

Harlequins have endured a difficult season domestically and went down 37-6 to Wasps in their previous match. Looking for a response to that demoralising defeat, they produced the ideal start.

Discipline let Exeter down in the early exchanges as they saw Ian Whitten and Phil Dollman yellow carded in the first 13 minutes.

Quins duly took advantage through Evans' penalty before the fly-half exploited an overlap to touch down. However, that was effectively as good as it got for the hosts.

Rob Baxter's side upped the intensity and went 13-8 ahead through Slade's two penalties and White's charge-down try.

The home team's fly-half did reduce the deficit from the tee, but Exeter went into the break 16-11 in front through another Slade effort.

Director of rugby O'Shea needed a quick response from his charges in the second period but it failed to materialise when the Chiefs' pivot crossed the whitewash.

Evans' third successful kick gave the London-based outfit hope but three more penalties by the visiting fly-half eased the West Country club to a superb win, despite Hopper's late try and a sin-binning for Thomas Waldrom.

The scorers:

For Harlequins:
Tries: Evans, Hopper
Con: Evans
Pens: Evans 3

For Exeter:
Tries: White, Slade
Cons: Slade 2
Pens: Slade 5
Yellow Cards: Whitten, Dollman, Waldrom

The teams:

Harlequins: 15 Ugo Monye, 14 Marland Yarde, 13 Matt Hopper, 12 Tom Casson, 11 Charlie Walker, 10 Nick Evans, 9 Danny Care, 8 Nick Easter (c) 7 Luke Wallace, 6 Jack Clifford, 5 George Robson, 4 Charlie Matthews, 3 Kyle Sinckler, 2 Dave Ward, 1 Mark Lambert.
Replacements: 16 Rob Buchanan, 17 Darryl Marfo, 18 Matt Shields, 19 Netani Talei, 20 Joe Trayfoot, 21 Karl Dickson, 22 Ben Botica, 23 Ollie Lindsay-Hague.

Exeter Chiefs: 15 Phil Dollman, 14 Ian Whitten, 13 Jack Nowell, 12 Sam Hill, 11 Matt Jess, 10 Henry Slade, 9 Will Chudley,8 Thomas Waldrom, 7 Ben White, 6 Dave Ewers, 5 Damian Welch, 4 Dean Mumm (c), 3 Tomas Francis, 2 Luke Cowan-Dickie, 1 Ben Moon.
Replacements: 16 Jack Yeandle, 17 Carl Rimmer, 18 Alex Brown, 19 Mitch Lees, 20 Tom Johnson, 21 Dave Lewis, 22 Gareth Steenson, 23 Byron McGuigan.

Venue: The Stoop
Referee: Matthew Carley
Assistant Referees: Ross Campbell, Roy Maybank
TMO: Rowan Kitt