Wiese scores as Leicester boost play-off hopes
SUNDAY PREMIERSHIP WRAP: Leicester Tigers further enhanced their semi-final ambitions with a bonus-point 26-5 win over Gloucester Rugby at Kingsholm.
A tense opening half saw the defences very much on top and for the first time this season the score was 0-0 at half-time.
It took another 14 minutes in the second half for that to be changed when Mike Brown bundled over from close range.
Suddenly the deadlock was broken and the scoring began, with Julian Montoya scoring the Tigers’ second before Jonny May responded with a try for Gloucester.
Heading into the final ten minutes the game was on a knife edge, with Tigers leading 12-5 and the next score vital, although Gloucester were down a man as Lewis Ludlow was sent to the sin bin.
That score went the Tigers’ way, with Ben Youngs rolling back the years to snipe through and give the Tigers a 19-5 lead.
The Tigers kept coming and quickly found themselves in the red zone again, and Jasper Wiese managed to ground the ball to seal the bonus point.
*London Irish gave their semi-final aspirations a significant boost with a 36-18 win against Sale Sharks at Gtech Community Stadium.
The Exiles were 22-10 ahead at half-time with Hugh O’Sullivan, Agustín Creevy and Lucio Cinti Luna crossing the whitewash before Jean-Luc du Preez struck back for the Sharks just before the break.
The visitors continued their fight back in the second half, a Sam Dugdale try and a George Ford penalty reducing the deficit to just four points at one stage.
However, Tarek Haffar gave the Irish some breathing room before an incredible score finished by James Stokes wrapped up the win.
The result leaves The Exiles just two points and one place behind Northampton Saints in fourth, while Sharks missed the chance to close the gap on league leaders Saracens.
*A fourth straight Premiership win leaves Bristol Bears seven points outside the top four in seventh, while Harlequins are a point and a place further back after a sixth defeat in their last seven league matches, both with four games left.
The scores and scorers:
Leicester 26-5 Gloucester
Tries: Brown, Montoya, B Youngs, Wiese
Cons: Pollard (3)
Gloucester: 15 Lloyd Evans, 14 Jonny May, 13 Tom Seabrook, 12 Seb Atkinson, 11 Ollie Thorley, 10 Santi Carreras, 9 Ben Meehan, 8 Ruan Ackermann, 7 Lewis Ludlow, 6 Jordy Reid, 5 Matias Alemanno, 4 Freddie Clarke, 3 Kirill Gotovtsev, 2 Seb Blake, 1 Val Rapava-Ruskin
Replacements: 16 Henry Walker, 17 Harry Elrington, 18 Jamal Ford-Robinson, 19 Cam Jordan, 20 Albert Tuisue, 21 Charlie Chapman, 22 Billy Twelvetrees, 23 Alex Hearle
Leicester: 15 Mike Brown, 14 Harry Potter, 13 Matt Scott, 12 Guy Porter, 11 Harry Simmons, 10 Handré Pollard, 9 Ben Youngs, 1 Tom West, 2 Julián Montoya (captain), 3 Joe Heyes, 4 Harry Wells, 5 Eli Snyman, 6 Hanro Liebenberg, 7 Olly Cracknell, 8 Jasper Wiese
Replacements: 16 Charlie Clare, 17 James Cronin, 18 Will Hurd, 19 Cameron Henderson, 20 George Martin, 21 Emeka Ilione, 22 Tom Whiteley, 23 Charlie Atkinson.
London Irish 36-18 Sale Sharks
For London Irish:
Try: O’Sullivan, Creevy, Luna, Haffar, Stokes
Cons: Jackson 4
Tries: Du Preez, Dugdale
Cons: Du Preez
Pens: Du Preez, Ford
London Irish: 15 Ben Loader, 14 Lucio Cinti, 13 Benhard van Rensburg, 12 Rory Jennings, 11 Ollie Hassell-Collins, 10 Paddy Jackson, 9 Hugh O’Sullivan, 8 So’otala Fa’aso’o, 7 Tom Pearson, 6 Matt Rogerson (captain), 5 Rob Simmons, 4 Api Ratuniyarawa, 3 Oliver Hoskins, 2 Agustin Creevy, 1 Facundo Gigena
Replacements: 16 Mike Willemse, 17 Tarek Haffar, 18 Lovejoy Chawatama, 19 Josh Caulfield, 20 Josh Basham, 21 Chandler Cunningham-South, 22 Joe Powell, 23 James Stokes.
Sale Sharks: 15 Joe Carpenter, 14 Tom Roebuck, 13 Rob du Preez, 12 Ryan Mills, 10 George Ford, 9 Raffi Quirke, 8 Jean-Luc du Preez, 7 Sam Dugdale, 6 Jono Ross (captain), 5 Jonny Hill, 4 Cobus Wiese, 3 Coenie Oosthuizen, 2 Ewan Ashman, 1 Bevan Rodd,
Replacements: 16 Tommy Taylor, 17 Simon McIntyre, 18 Nick Schonert, 19 Josh Beaumont, 20 Dan du Preez, 21 Gus Warr, 22 Luke James, 23 Arron Reed.
Bristol 51-26 Harlequins
Tries: Thacker 2, Ibitoye, Radradra, Randall, Piutau 2
Cons: MacGinty 4, Williams
Pens: MacGinty, Williams
Tries: Kenningham 2, Bassett, Murley
Cons: Edwards 3
Bristol Bears: 15 Charles Piutau, 14 Siva Naulago, 13 Semi Radradra, 12 James Williams, 11 Gabriel Ibitoye, 10 AJ MacGinty, 9 Harry Randall, 8 Magnus Bradbury, 7 Fitz Harding, 6 Steven Luatua, 5 Chris Vui, 4 Joe Batley, 3 Max Lahiff, 2 Harry Thacker, 1 Yann Thomas
Replacements: 16 Bryan Byrne, 17 Jake Woolmore, 18 George Kloska, 19 Joe Joyce, 20 Jake Heenan, 21 Andy Uren, 22 Sam Bedlow, 23 Ioan Lloyd.
Harlequins: 15 Nick David, 14 Cadan Murley, 13 Luke Northmore, 12 Andre Esterhuizen, 11 Josh Bassett, 10 Will Edwards, 9 Danny Care, 8. Tom Lawday, 7. James Chisholm, 6. Jack Kenningham, 5. Stephan Lewies (captain), 4. Dino Lamb, 3. Wilco Louw, 2. Sam Riley, 1. Joe Marler
Replacements: 16 Jack Musk, 17 Fin Baxter, 18 Will Collier, 19 Irne Herbst, 20 Will Evans, 21 Luke Wallace, 22 Scott Steele, 23 Oscar Beard