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London Welsh 15 London Irish 9: Gordon Ross seals points for Welsh as red card mars dire game

London Welsh 15 London Irish 9: Ross seals points for Welsh as red card mars dire game


17:59 GMT, 1 December 2012



17:59 GMT, 1 December 2012

London Welsh claimed victory over basement rivals London Irish at the Kassam Stadium.

However the game was ruined as a contest by the early dismissal of number eight Chris Hala'ufia which resulted in the visitors having to play 70 minutes with 14 men.

The match was a dreadful spectacle with neither side having any attacking invention to break down the opposition's defence and it was left to Gordon Ross to secure victory for his side with five penalty goals.

No way through: London Irish's Sailosi Taicakibau is tackled

No way through: London Irish's Sailosi Taicakibau is tackled

London Welsh took a fifth minute lead when Ross kicked his first penalty after Irish were penalised for dragging down a lineout drive.

Almost immediately, Welsh suffered a big blow when influential centre Hudson Tonga'uiha left the field with what appeared to be a serious shoulder injury.

Irish had their first opportunity for points but Ian Humphreys was narrowly short with his 45-metre penalty attempt.

On the march: London Welsh's Tyson Keates drives forward

On the march: London Welsh's Tyson Keates drives forward

The visitors then suffered a huge set back when Hala'ufia was sent off for a dangerous tip tackle on Welsh replacement Seb Jewell.

The referee JP Doyle sought the advice of his touch judge before issuing a red card.

Hala'ufia expressed his regret by immediately walking over to the uninjured Jewell to shake his hand but the damage was already done.

Flying high: London Welsh's Jonathan Mills rises to take the ball

Flying high: London Welsh's Jonathan Mills rises to take the ball

The resulting penalty was kicked by Ross.

With 15 minutes gone, Irish were again penalised to enable Ross to kick his third penalty to give his side a handy 9-0 advantage.

Tom Homer put Irish on the scoreboard with a penalty before the visitors were given further hope when Humphreys kicked another.

When Matt Garvey carelessly lost possession, Irish again offended for Ross to be on target.

With two minutes of the half remaining, Homer had the opportunity to reduce the arrears but his kick from just inside his own half sailed narrowly wide to leave Welsh deservedly ahead 12-6 at the interval.

Irish introduced Halani Aulika at prop for the second half and were unlucky not to get the first points of the half when Humphrey's penalty rebounded back off a post.

The visitors' woes continued when flanker Garvey was sent to the sin bin for a deliberate offside before Humphreys again missed with another penalty attempt.

Playing against 13 men, Welsh blew their best chance.

Tom Arscott neatly chipped through for Nick Scott to run on to. The wing was first to the ball and booted it over the try line but somehow Tyson Keates failed to secure the easy touchdown.

Full stretch: Matt Garvey of London Irish bursts through

Full stretch: Matt Garvey of London Irish bursts through

Garvey returned with no damage to the score line but once again Irish offended at the line out to allow a kick from Ross to scrape over via the crossbar.

Homer missed with a long range penalty but fifteen minutes from time succeeded with another as the spirited Irish raised their game.

When Sonny Parker was yellow carded for a deliberate offside with 10 minutes to go, Irish scented an unlikely win but Welsh hung on.

Leicester 22 London Irish 15: Match report

Leicester 22 London Irish 15: Ford bags 17 points to seal victory for 14-man Tigers



18:31 GMT, 18 November 2012

Holders Leicester fought off a ferocious fightback by London Irish at Welford Road to get their LV=Cup campaign back on track.

Trailing 19-8 with 11 minutes left, Irish threw everything at Leicester who were down to 14 men and scored their second try of the afternoon to reduce the deficit to four points.

But Leicester kept their cool, fought their way upfield and young fly-half George Ford sealed victory with his fifth penalty of the game, taking his tally to 17 points.

Star of the show: George Ford (right) scored 17 points for Tigers on their way to victory

Star of the show: George Ford (right) scored 17 points for Tigers on their way to victory

Leicester's victory keeps alive their hopes of retaining the cup after losing their opening game at Saracens.

Their only try came from lock Rob Andrew, while Irish scored two through Anthony Watson and Tom Homer, with fly-half Ian Humphreys kicking a penalty and a conversion.

Irish, who started their cup campaign with a win over Sale, started brightly and led 8-0 after nine minutes thanks to a penalty from fly-half Humphreys and a fabulous try by full-back Watson.

It was made by winger Topsy Ojo, who capped a brilliant break down the right wing with a well-timed inside pass for Watson to score. Humphreys failed with the conversion.

But Leicester hit back and dominated the rest of the half. They led 10-8 after 24 minutes, a lead that could have been bigger but for two missed penalties in the 16th and 30th minutes from Ford.

Leicester scored 10 points inside four minutes, their try coming after some fierce pressure on the Irish line. Humphreys' charged down kick led to a line-out five metres out, the Tigers pinched it and Andrew surged infield before barging his way over near the posts for his first try for the club on his fifth appearance to give Ford an easy conversion.

Hand-off: Ed Slater (right) holds off Declan Danaher

Hand-off: Ed Slater (right) holds off Declan Danaher

Not quite: Shane Geraghty (right) and the rest of the London Irish team were unable to steal a win

Not quite: Shane Geraghty (right) and the rest of the London Irish team were unable to steal a win

Ford then slotted a 40-metre penalty after locks George Skivington and Matt Garvey were warned for taking out Brett Deacon in the air at a line-out.

And with a minute to go the 19-year-old Ford, who was the International Rugby Board's Young Player of the Year in 2011, capped a fine first half with a 40-metre penalty to stretch Leicester's lead to 13-8.

Leicester piled into the Irish at the start of the second half and got their reward for some strong attacks when the referee awarded them a penalty in front of the posts which Ford kicked in the 49th minute to make it 16-8.

Irish's best moment came when Humphreys made a sizzling counter-attack from his own 22 but his pass to scrum-half Darren Allinson, who looked likely to score, went forward.

Gotcha: Slater claims the ball from a line-out

Gotcha: Slater claims the ball from a line-out

Leicester, with young prop Fraser Balmain having a fine game, also dominated the scrums and they earned themselves a penalty 56 metres out when they demolished the Irish pack and Ford banged it over.

Allinson put some much-needed fizz into Irish with a fabulous break from a ruck before feeding Garvey, who looked certain to score before Micky Young brought him down 10 metres out.

Irish were eventually awarded a penalty near the posts but somehow Humphreys contrived to miss it.

Leicester had prop Boris Stankovich sent off for a high tackle, much to the annoyance of the 17,569 crowd, and the extra man told with 11 minutes left when replacement Homer squeezed over in the left corner. Humphreys' brilliant conversion reduced the arrears to four points.

Ford, however, sealed an important win for Leicester with his fifth penalty with two minutes left.

Ulster 31 Aironi 10: Hopes alive for Ulster after thumping win

Ulster 31 Aironi 10: Hopes alive for Ulster after thumping win

Ulster kept their European hopes alive with a thumping five-try win over Aironi, a result which puts Brian McLaughlin”s squad top of Pool Four at least until Clermont and Leicester Tigers do battle on Sunday.

Tries from man of the match Stephen Ferris, Adam D”Arcy, Andrew Trimble, Paul Marshall and 19-year-old Paddy Jackson saw Ulster on their way.

The win sets them up well to repeat the dose when they visit Aironi for the second part of the European double-header next Saturday, a game which Ulster again have to bid to take maximum points from.

Battle: Aironi

Battle: Aironi”s Tommaso D”Apice is tackled by Paul Marshall and Pedrie Wannenburg

Ulster showed their intent pretty much from the off, spurning an early penalty chance to go for the corner.

It did not pay off during Ulster”s bright opening – with Ferris making his presence felt – nor indeed the next time they tried it after just 10 minutes.

But just after the first quarter they made the breakthrough when a long pass from Ruan Pienaar saw fellow South African Pedrie Wannenburg pop a pass to Ferris and with some space out on the left the Ireland flanker powered through one tackle and scored in the left corner.

Ian Humphreys nailed a great conversion and Ulster were off, though Tito Tebaldi narrowed the home side”s lead to 7-3 three minutes later with a penalty.

The Aironi out-half was then wide with a long-range attempt after Ferris was penalised at a tackle and then Humphreys was also wide with a much more straightforward attempt just before the half hour.

Tebaldi should have put the Italians a point behind but missed a fairly run-of-the-mill effort after 32 minutes and Ulster had been granted a fairly major let-off.

Jump to it: Aironi

Jump to it: Aironi”s Marco Bortolami wins a line-out

The home side were also given a considerable boost by the sin-binning of full-back Giulio Toniolatti and with seven men now in the Aironi scrum, Ulster shoved them backwards and won the put-in in the Italians” 22 late in the half.

From there, after a couple of minutes of constant pressure, full-back D”Arcy scored in the same corner as Ferris and with Humphreys this time missing the extras Ulster went in at the break leading 12-3.

They hit the ground running on the re-start with a great wraparound from Pienaar with Rory Best allowed D”Arcy to put Trimble in some space though the Ireland winger had to work hard for his score, which was unconverted by Humphreys to make it 17-3.

With Aironi full-back Toniolatti coming back from the bin just after Trimble”s score, Ulster had put on a useful 10 points in his absence before Stefan Terblanche, on his debut, Marshall and Tom Court were brought on for Trimble, Pienaar and Paddy McCallister respectively.

The impact was swift as from a lineout take from Johann Muller, Simone Favaro strayed offside and Marshall scored from a quick tap for the bonus score Ulster had needed so much. Humphreys slotted the conversion and Ulster led 24-3.

With seemingly mass substitutions breaking up the game”s pattern, there was still more to come from Ulster as sub Jackson ran a nice loop and made the try line. Humphreys kicked his third conversion for Ulster to lead 31-3.

Replacement hooker Tommaso D”Apice”s late score, converted by Naas Oliver, was little consolation for Aironi.