Wasps claim seven-try A league win over Leicester

Date: 19 Mar 2018

Wasps claimed a bonus point win from an entertaining A League game against Leicester Tigers played in the hospitable but freezing cold surroundings of Aylesbury RFC’s 4G surface.

The Coventry-based club claimed seven tries through some pacy, enterprising rugby, in which a score apiece from front row trio TJ Harris, Will Stuart and George Thornton caught the eye.

 A frantic opening ten minutes ended with Wasps holding a five-point lead courtesy of Harris’s driving lineout score.

However, Tigers soon struck back through scrum half Ben Pointon’s close-range sneak which followed a series of powerful carries from his pack.

Joe Ford converted, and the Tigers No.10 was on the mark again early in the second quarter to upgrade Matt Smith’s 40 metre interception score.

Craig Hampson and Owain James combined well on the blindside only for Wasps to knock on a metre from the visitors’ line.

But the visitors eventually converted their territorial edge into points through second row Marcus Garratt’s try which followed a long spell of black-and-gold pressure.

Jacob Umaga converted, and Wasps outside half added a second well-judged conversion after James’ break and offload allowed Thornton to show the defence a clean pair of heels.

This left Wasps with a 19-14 interval advantage, which they soon extended through Stuart’s bonus point try and Umaga’s conversion.

And with confidence visibly growing Wasps produced another outstanding score, courtesy of Connor Eastgate’s sublime line after Hampson broke from a scrum in the visitors’ 22.

Leicester were denied a third try when recalled for an earlier knock on, and worse followed for the Tigers as Wasps skipper Hampson darted over from close range.

Umaga upgraded the try with another fine kick, and he repeated the dose 12 minutes from time when Coventry prop Jack Higgins applied the finishing touch to a lineout drive.

The Tigers had the last word through Ford’s conversion of winger Bamidale Fadahunsi’s try which followed a long spell of continuity, but it was Wasps who claimed the spoils from their best A League display of the season.

Wasps A: Ollie Bluck (Saracens Academy); Tom Stileman (Oxford University), Guy Armitage, Connor Eastgate, Owain James; Jacob Umaga, Craig Hampson; George Thornton, TJ Harris, Will Stuart; Marcus Garratt, Cameron Gray (Coventry); Will Owen, James Seabrook, George Cox (Nottingham).
Replacements: Aaron Thompson (Bishop Burton College), Jack Higgins (Coventry), Paul Doran Jones, Paul Hamber (Bishop Burton College), Alex Salt (Hinckley), Fransico Viera (Rotherham), Josh Thiel (Bishop Burton College), Tom Bacon (Wasps U.17).

Leicester Tigers A:
George Worth; Will Foster (Loughborough Students), Matt Smith, Charlie Thacker, Bamidele Fadahunsi (Loughborough Students); Joe Ford, Ben Pointon (Loughborough Students); Facundo Gigena, Jack Dickinson (Hinckley RFC), Pat Cilliers; Joe Maksymiw, B J Edwards; Henri Lavin, Taylor Gough, Thom Smith.
Replacements: Harry Mahoney, Owen Hills, Chris Baumann, Xander Purcell, Ollie Kilgallon (Loughborough Students), Will Findlay (Loughborough Students), Andre Dunn, Jonathan Hughes (Loughborough Students).

Referee: Neil Chivers

Tickets are available for the Aviva Premiership visits of Worcester Warriors on April 14 and Northampton Saints on April 29 at www.wasps.co.uk/tickets or by phone on 02476 786411.