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Match Report

19 May 2002: Wasps v Sale - Quarter Final

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Match Report
Wasps's Badge Wasps 27
Sharks's Badge Sale - Quarter Final 43
Fixture Type: Premiership Venue: Away
Match Date: Sun 19 May 2002, Kick Off: 13:45

Satisfying evening at Henley for Wasps A with fine win

The strongest Wasps A lineup of the season produced an equally strong performance with a 34 - 3 victory over Gloucester United.

Three tries in the first half, and two in the second also earned them a bonus point in an outstanding team display. The pack laid a solid foundation for the backs to produce some thrilling rugby, while the defence never gave Gloucester an inch of space and denied them even a sniff of a tryscoring opportunity.

After an exhilarating first half played at breakneck speed, the pace of the game slackened in the second forty but Joe Burton’s spectacular solo try ensured that the evening ended on a high.

Gloucester went ahead in the second minute, through a penalty from flyhalf Tim Taylor. Wasps came roaring back from the restart, and flowing back play combined with some powerful running by the forwards, and quick recycled ball almost brought them an immediate try. They again came close to a try when they went for the line andafter a series of reset scrums, a turnover enabled Gloucester to clear.

From the lineout, Christian Wade (pictured) came into the line from the blindside wing, to race through a gap in the defence. He found Joe Launchbury in support, and a neat offload by the England U-20 lock fed Mike Mayhew who was stopped on the line but Wasps retained possession and Charlie Beech burrowed over. Former Ireland Under-20 flyhalf Andrew Burke landed the conversion from the right of the posts to make it 7-3 after seven minutes. When asked about his offload, after the game, Launchbury remarked that he’d learnt it from Sonny Bill Williams!

A quick pass by Burke launched an attack from deep inside Wasps territory and Seb Jewell and Phil McKenzie combined well to send Wade away down the right. He cut inside two defenders, to find his way into the 22 and when he was caught by the defence the ball was quickly worked back out to the left and McKenzie again made good ground before Gloucester conceded a penalty inside their 22. Burke landed the kick to stretch the lead to 10-3.

Wasps went further ahead with a magnificent try on the half-hour. After the forwards punched their way into their 22, with Joe Burton prominent, the ball was released to the backs and Burke showed some dazzling sleight of hand before feeding Jewell with the ball quickly moved out to Wade who went over unopposed. Will Robinson took over the kicking and was immediately on target to stretch the lead to 17-3.

Further thrilling interplay between backs and forwards produced another great piece of rugby which was almost rewarded with a try in the left corner, and Burke then missed a tricky penalty from near touch.
Wasps were moving the ball wide at every opportunity, with Burke and Jewell both sending out precision long passes and McKenzie posing a constant threat. The third try came with the final play of the half, following a blistering 50-metre burst by left-winger Steve Hamilton which took him close to a try. The ball was worked out wide to the right, then back out to the left, where Robinson appeared to finish off a magnificent move . The conversion attempt went wide, to leave Wasps 22-3 ahead at the break, after 40 minutes of adventurous, high-speed rugby.

Charlie Beech was replaced by Arden Perot at the start of the second half and another front row substitution five minutes after the restart, saw Bob Baker come on for Shaun Ruwers. With the pace of the game markedly less frenetic than in the first half, it took some time for Wasps to show the fluency they’d displayed before the break. In the first meaningful attack of the half, another strong run by Mckenzie took play deep into the Gloucester 22. Launchbury then made way for James Doherty before Wasps secured the bonus point when Burton went over from a five-metre scrum. Burke missed the conversion, before Alex Fan took the place of Sam Jones in the Wasps back row and Tom Lindsay came on for Mike Mayhew.

With 18 minutes left, Gloucester were reduced to 14 men, when prop Shaun Knight was shown a yellow card. Another Wasps replacement brought Jonah Holmes into the action. He went out on to the left wing, after replacing Phil McKenzie, with Steve Hamilton moving into the centre. Tom French then replaced Marty Veale. Holmes was soon involved, when he was on the end of a huge pass from Robinson, to break away down the left, but his attempted scissors pass to the supporting Will Matthews was intercepted.

With six minutes of the game left, Joe Burton showed his remarkable pace, to race 40 metres for a magnificent solo try, which Burke converted, to make the final score 34-3 and round off a highly satisfying evening for the men in Black and Gold.

Coach Rob Hoadley gives his reaction after the game

Coach Rob Hoadley gives his reaction after the game

Wasps A
15 Will Robinson 14 Steve Hamilton 13 Phil McKenzie 12 Seb Jewell 11 Christian Wade 10 Andrew Burke 9 Charlie Davies 1 Charlie Beech 2 Mike Mayhew 3 Shaun Ruwers 4 Marty Veale 5 Joe Launchbury 6 Will Matthews 7 Sam Jones 8 Joe Burton

Replacements: 16 Tom Lindsay 17 Tom French 18 Bob Baker 19 Arden Perrot 20 James Doherty 21 Jonah Holmes 22 Charles Broughton 23 Alex Fan

15 Rob Dempsey 14 Ruben Haile 13 Jack Hayse 12 Ryan Mills 11 Ryan Brade 10 Tim Taylor 9 Dan Robson 1 Yann Thomas 2 Darren Daviduik 3 Shaun Knight 4 Dan Williams 5 Harry Cassan 6 Brett Deacon 7 Matt Cox 8 Gareth Evans

Replacements: 16 Korree Britton 17 Richard Barrington 18 Tom Savage 19 Rob Langley 20 Waylon Gasson 21 Sam Smith 22 Scott Meekin 23 Henry Sandys