The Second XV went down to their second defeat at the season last night when they lost 13 -12 to London Irish at The Stoop, in what was a disappointing team performance.
In wet conditions the 2nd XV put in their poorest performance of the season against our local rivals. After Adrian Jarvis missed an early penalty opportunity Irish took a six point lead following two successful penalty kicks from their left wing Ed Thrower. Irish played the better rugby during the first forty minutes with NEC Harlequins turning the ball over to often to set up any real territorial pressure on the opposition.
Half Time NEC Harlequins 0 - 6 London Irish
At half time Quins made one change bringing on Mike Brown in place of Henry Barratt who suffered some difficulties with a hamstring. After ten minutes London Irish set up an attack on the Harlequins 22 which seemed to be well covered. However, a break by the Irish Centre led to a Harlequins missed tackle and Irish wing Topsy Ojo was put away to score in the corner, a try that was converted by Ed Thrower. 13 - 0 to the Irish.
In the last twenty minutes Harlequins began to play following the arrival of the cavalry from the bench. After 56 minutes Mike Worsley replaced Laurent Gomez, James Hayter replaced Cameron Dott, and Reg DeJager replaced Jon Dawson. Although Adrian Jarvis missed a second penalty kick this was quickly followed by a well worked try scored by Chris Cracknell that was successfully converted. Score 13 - 7.
Further replacements were made when Luke Sherriff came on for Tom Guest and Bill Davison replaced Karl Rudzki as Quins continued to mount pressure on the Irish line. This resulted in another penalty to Quins which just went passed the right hand post.
In the 71st minute following a knock on by Quins the London Irish number 20 was shown a red card by the referee - something which it has to be said mystified everyone in the crowd.
Finally after a period of sustained pressure in the left hand corner, where Quins pounded the Irish Line they eventually scored through Rob Jewell to make the score 13-12. The resultant conversion was missed and the final whistle went.
The next home 2nd XV game is against Gloucester at The Stoop on Monday 9 February - KO 7.30pm
Harlequins fan Ed Atkin won the Etihad Airways 'Up and Under' competition at the Northampton Saints game. As a result, he and a friend have won a holiday to Abu Dhabi courtesy of Etihad Airways and the Abu Dhabi Tourism & Culture Authority.