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Fixture Type: Aviva Premiership
Match Date: Sat 15 Sep 2012
Kick Off: 15:00
Venue: Adams Park
Referee: Luke Pearce
Assistant Referee: Stuart Terheege
Assistant Referee: Kevin Stewart
The hosts ran away with the match in the final quarter, scoring three tries in 13 minutes to seal the bonus point victory.
On a pristine surface bathed in sunshine, the Exiles set their stall out with some expansive passing movements from the very first kick-off, Sailosi Tagicakibau, Topsy Ojo and Jonathan Joseph looking in ominous form.
Irish dominated the opening quarter on both the territory and possession front; however, it was Wasps that drew first blood with Wales international, Stephen Jones, opening the scoring with a penalty straight in front of the uprights on 4 minutes.
The Exiles lost Leo Halavatau on 9 minutes and John Ryan came on as a replacement to make an immediate impact. The man on loan from Munster tore into the Wasps front row to earn Irish two penalties inside seven minutes. The second saw Steve Shingler register Irish’s first points to level the match at 3-3.
The pressure Irish had exerted on the hosts finally told when Marland Yarde crossed for a fantastic individual score. The former England U20 winger, who Brian Smith has tipped to make a full impact at senior level in the not too distant future, beat four defenders before diving in at the corner. Shane Geraghty, who had come on as a blood replacement for Steven Shingler, was instrumental in orchestrating proceedings in the lead up.
Stephen Jones kicked two penalty goals in the space of five minutes to edge his side in front. Steven Shingler replied with a monster penalty on the stroke of half time to take Irish into the sheds 11-9 ahead.
The Exiles had a shocking start to the second half conceding a penalty from the kick-off which was punished by Stephen Jones to put Wasps back in front.
Things got better for the hosts when Tom Varndell dotted down in the corner, showing good power to score the try. Stephen Jones converted from the corner to extend Wasps lead to 19-11.
Another penalty at scrum time saw Shingler kick his third penalty to cut the deficit to five points.
This was as good as it got for the Exiles as Wasps ran away with contest in the final 15 minutes. Joe Simpson scored Wasps second try when he sniped around the fringe to dive in under posts before replacement prop forward Zak Taulafo scored with three minutes remaining.
A last-gasp try from Tom Varndell condemned London Irish to their third consecutive Aviva Premiership defeat and confirmed the Wasps bonus point victory.
London Irish welcome Bath to Madejski Stadium next week end for round four of the Premiership juggernaut.
Score sequence (London Irish first): 0-3, 3-3, 8-3, 8-6, 8-9, 11-9, 11-12, 11-19, 14-19, 14-26, 14-29, 14-36, 14-43
Scorers: London Wasps: Penalties: Jones (4, 30, 35, 41, 77); Tries: Varndell (46, 80), Simpson (66), Taulafo (77); Conversions: Jones (4); London Irish: Penalties: Shingler (16, 40, 56); Tries: Yarde (24)
London Wasps team
15. Hugo Southwell (Captain); 14. Tom Varndell; 13. Elliot Daly; 12. Andrea Masi; 11. Christian Wade; 10. Stephen Jones; 9. Joe Simpson; 1. Tim Payne (rep: Simon McIntyre, 68); 2. T Rhys Thomas (rep: Tom Lindsay, 21-28, 43-); 3. Fabio Stabiano (rep: Zak Taulafo, 40); 4. Tom Palmer; 5. Marco Wentzel; 6. Joe Launchbury (rep: James Haskell, 61); 7. Jonathan Poff; 8. Ashley Johnson (rep: Billy Vunipola, 65)
Replacements: 16. Tom Lindsay; 17. Simon McIntyre; 18. Zak Taulafo; 19. James Haskell; 20. Billy Vunipola; 21. Charlie Davies; 22. Nick Robinson; 23. Tommy Bell
London Irish team
15. Tom Homer; 14. Topsy Ojo; 13. Jonathan Joseph; 12.Sailosi Tagicakibau; 11. Marland Yarde; 10. Steve Shingler (rep: Shane Geraghty, 21-26); 9. Tomás O’Leary (rep: Jack Moates, 35); 1. Max Lahiff (rep: Halani Aulika, 68); 2. Scott Lawson; 3. Leo Halavatau (rep: John Ryan, 9); 4. George Skivington (rep: Kieran Low, 67); 5. Bryn Evans; 6. Declan Danaher (Captain); 7. Ofisa Treviranus; 8. Jon Fisher (rep: Alex Gray, 19-23, 67)
Replacements: 16. Brian Blaney; 17. Halani Aulika; 18. John Ryan; 19. Kieran Low; 20. Alex Gray; 21. Anthony Watson; 22. Shane Geraghty; 23. Jack Moates
Referee: Luke Pearce