'Quins match report/Courage League Update

'Quins match report/Courage League Update

Post by Liz Goldenber » Fri, 11 Apr 1997 04:00:00

From Bloomberg Sports & the Press Association

With their critical win over Saracens on Wednesday, the
Harlequins moved back up the Courage League standings to 4th
place.  That puts them back in contention for the European
Competition - only the top 4 clubs in the Courage League
Standings will participate.  The two London teams were in
competition for the last slot in to the European Competition.

Saracens can now forget such plans.  They were by far the worse
of the two sides, who produced something of an anti-climax in a
week of such dramatic, cliffhanging club rugby.

Harlequins, who go ahead of Sale by one point, but have played
one game more, had the game comfortably won before a couple of
tries in the final four minutes put the icing on the cake.

Scores from fullback Jim Staples and center Peter Mensah, both
converted by Thierry Lacroix, more than doubles 'Quins score.

Saracens were tryless for the second consecutive game, having
failed to cross Gloucester's goal line at the weekend and had the
indignity of the rarest score of all in modern rugby - a duck.

Their nil return came despite being awarded 12 first half
penalties and gaining 17 line out takes.

Saracens were trailing as early as the 6th minute when 'Quins
pinched a lineout throw and moved the ball down the line.  Will
Carling found Staples as an extra man, and wing Daren O'Leary was
sent in with a typical sprint from 45 yards for his 24th try of
the season.  Saracens badly missed Australian ace kicker Michael
Lynagh.  Back up kickers Andy Lee and Andy Tuningley both failed
with first half penalties.

Carling pulled of an improtant tackle on Richard Wallace before
half time, and Saracens had nothing to offer afte the interval.  

Irish *** Keith Wood amply proved his return to fitness and
availability for the Lions tour by repeatedly charging into a
wall of oppenents to test his injured shoulder.

Lacroix added penalties in the 46th and 61st minutes, and his
conversions of the later tries made his contributin 164 points in
12 matches.  

Staples scored on the blind side of a ruck, and Mensah broke
through after a winning scrum.

Courage League One Standings:

Team    P       W       D       L       Pts F   Pts A   Pts
Wasps   18      14      1       3       553     311     29
Leice   17      13      0       4       519     272     26
Bath    17      11      1       5       592     324     23
'Quins  17      11      0       6       618     329     22
Sale    16      10      1       5       440     325     21
Glou.   17      10      0       7       385     394     20
Sara.   16      9       1       6       387     315     19
North.  17      8       0       9       371     350     16
Brist   17      6       0       11      332     494     12
Lon. Ir 15      3       0       12      333     520     6
Wt. Har 19      3       0       16      330     685     6
Orrell  18      2       0       16      239     747     4