London Irish claim fine victory at Harlequins


London Irish scored two tries in each half at The Stoop
Gallagher Premiership
Harlequins (3) 15
Tries: Dombrandt, Murley Con: Smith Pen: Smith
London Irish (17) 29
Tries: Rogerson, Rona 2, Hoskins Cons: Myler 3 Pen: Myler

London Irish recorded back-to-back away Premiership wins for the first time since September 2014 with a fine bonus-point victory at Harlequins.

With the wind behind them the visitors built a 17-3 half-time lead, Curtis Rona and Matt Rogerson scoring tries.

Quins moved to within seven when Alex Dombrandt crashed over but Rona charged down a kick to score another for Irish.

A Cadan Murley try gave the hosts hope before Ollie Hoskins grabbed a deserved fourth score for Declan Kidney’s side.

Irish’s first successive Premiership triumphs this season see them rise to eighth in the table, level on points with Harlequins but below them on points difference.

Their two first-half tries both came down the right-hand side, Rogerson cutting inside to slide over and Rona diving under the posts after a break from Ben Meehan.

Ross Chisholm had a score ruled out for obstruction as Quins toiled, and they were unable to turn the tables after the break despite having the wind with them.

A comeback looked on when Dombrandt took a short ball on the run and burst over but Brett Herron saw his kick charged down by Rona which restored Irish’s buffer.

The impressive Dombrandt teed up Murley to score in the corner before Hoskins had the last word for Irish from a rolling maul to cap a great second-half display against the elements.

London Irish assistant coach George Skivington:

“Ben Donnell was outstanding. He was called in late with Blair [Cowan] ill and has stepped up as if he was in the team all week. That hard graft, you can’t put that in people it is just the way they are wired.

“We have got a couple of lads that have never played in the Prem, I don’t think they appreciate how hard it is to go and win at these places.

“Those of us who have been in the league a long time, we understand. As the season goes on, we will see how important these wins are, we will keep chipping away and try and get a few more.”

Harlequin head coach Paul Gustard:

“We are struggling with injuries, we had Niall Saunders – a young scrum-half – covering our wing because we have no one else. We have 10 fit backs, and they are all out there, people playing out of position as well,” he said.

“We didn’t get anywhere and that is testament to the team that Declan [Kidney] has built.

“He has got a lot of international experience there, 300 tier-one international caps and some of that expertise and nous probably showed at times in wet weather. We have to learn to play in those conditions better.”

Harlequins: Morris; R Chisholm, Murley, Lasike, Ibitoye; Smith, Ladajo; Garcia Botta, Gray, Collier, Young, Symons, J Chisholm (capt), Evans, Dombrandt.

Replacements: Baldwin, Lambert, Kerrod, Cavubati, Kunatani, Care, Herron, Saunders.

London Irish: Loader; Naholo, Rona, Hepetema, Hassell-Collins; Myler, Meehan; Elrington, Porecki, Kepu, Van der Merwe (capt), Coleman, Rogerson, Donnell, Tuisue.

Replacements: Atkins, Dell, Hoskins, Mafi, Ioane, Phipps, Williams, Stokes.

Referee: JP Doyle (RFU).

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