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After a shaky start to the new season, London Wasps have finally secured a win. Warren Gatland’s side beat the Leeds Tykes 13-9, on Sunday night, and in doing so moved up to seventh on the Zurich Premiership league table. The highlight of the game was Lawrence Dallaglio slotting a drop goal in the first half.
Wasps came into this game knowing that they had never lost a league game to Leeds; the closest the Yorkshire-based side came was a 27-all draw. However, after two league losses, the side was hungry to get the season going and show just why they are champions.
The first half saw Wasps dominate proceedings but it was the boot of Gordon Ross that brought up the first points of the game. The Scottish international made no mistake with the penalty and took an early 3-nil lead.
Ten minutes later, Alex King levelled the scores with a penalty. Minutes later Wasps broke the Leeds defence when Tom Voyce showed the form he produced last season with a fantastic run down the left-hand touchline. Expecting another speedster to back him up when tackled, Voyce must have been pleasantly surprised to find prop, Will Green, on hand to collect the pass and score the only try of the game. The try and the King conversion that followed, moved the side into the 10-3 lead.
Ross kept the home side in touch with his second penalty of the night. However, Leeds scrumhalf, Alex Dickens was sin-binned for excessive use of the boot. Wasps pushed on while the scrumhalf was off the field. Then came the moment of the game, when Dallaglio slotted a drop goal from 25m out to take the side 13-6 up. It’s not often that Dallaglio slots drop goals, but whatever the reason for his decision, the ball went over the posts. Unfortunately it was the captain’s last act as he went off three minutes later with a rib injury. More details on the injury will follow in the week.
Ross kept Leeds in touch with his third penalty of the night and the sides turned round at half time with the score 13-9 to Wasps. The second half started scrappily with both sides squandering several try-scoring opportunities through sloppy handling. Phil Greening's return to first-team action ended on the hour mark, when Ben Gotting replaced him.
Mark Van Gisbergen and Peter Richards both made a series of sniping breaks to keep the hosts on their toes. However, the half-time score remained unchanged.
Leeds pressed frantically in the final 10 minutes but Wasps held on to secure the win and remind the rest of the Premiership that they are on their way.