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Page last updated at 15:49 GMT, Saturday, 10 May 2008 16:49 UK
Premiership final day
10 May, 2008, 1500 BST



Leeds (16) 28
Tries: Biggs, Hepworth, Fourie Cons: Di Bernardo 2 Pens: Di Bernardo 3

Wasps (24) 45
Tries: Voyce 3, Waters, Ibanez, Ward Cons: Staunton 6 Pens: Staunton

Wasps' Paul Sackey gets by Leeds forward Tom McGee
Wasps' Paul Sackey gets by Leeds forward Tom McGee

Tom Voyce's hat-trick saw London Wasps to the bonus-point victory they needed to seal second spot in the Premiership despite a brave performance from Leeds.

Alberto di Bernardo put Leeds 9-0 up before Voyce's first, but Tom Biggs's interception try put the hosts on top.

Wasps upped the ante, though, and tries from Voyce, Fraser Waters and Rafael Ibanez secured the crucial bonus point.

Jonny Hepworth and Hendre Fourie bagged a couple in reply, but Joe Ward and Voyce's third sealed the win for Wasps.

The result means Wasps will enjoy home advantage against third-placed Bath - who lost to Gloucester - in the play-off semi-finals.

Wasps have timed their end-of-season run to perfection again this campaign, but they were almost made to pay for a sluggish start by a Leeds side playing with a freedom and confidence that belied their relegation form.

Di Bernardo scored three penalties from three in the first 15 minutes and, after Voyce had crossed following good work from the pack to reduce the deficit, Biggs intercepted a pass and ran the length of the field to put the hosts 16-7 up.

606: DEBATE
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It looked like Wasps might face a half-time dressing down, but Voyce turned Leigh Hinton inside-out and grabbed a second try to help put the Londoners ahead for the first time.

Despite being below their best, Wasps then extended their lead thanks to a Waters try and when Ibanez ended a flowing move with a try on 50 minutes it was game over.

That score also ensured Wasps a bonus point and the margin was almost extended seconds later when Voyce crossed for what looked a legitimate hat-trick - but the score was ruled out for an earlier forward pass.

With the bonus point secured, Wasps eased off and Jonny Hepworth and Hendre Fourie made the most of some slack defending to cross for the home side.

Those scores came either side of Ward's try, the substitute finishing off an excellent ruck from the Wasps pack, and Voyce danced over late on to seal a comfortable win and claim his hat-trick.

The victory also extends the career of England's World Cup winner Lawrence Dallaglio, who retires at the end of this campaign.


Leeds director of rugby Stuart Lancaster, who will join the RFU this summer:
"It was an emotional day - it has been a great occasion. Sadly we're relegated but I'm leaving a good set-up here behind.

"The spirit at this club is a great one - my advice to Leeds is to avoid complacency because the National League One is a tough one but we have the resources here to come back.

"This performance encapsulates our whole season - great endeavour, some excellent tries but the unforced error at crucial moments.

"Wasps had to win and win well but we kept coming back at them - they're a very good defensive side but we caused them problems. Our weakness is the consistency of decision making at crucial moments."

Wasps rugby director Ian McGeechan:
"It was a fantastic performance under the conditions. To work as hard and as long as we did really reflects what has happened to us since October when we were 10th in the league.

"We have the smallest squad in this league and it has been a major effort to achieve what we have.

"The play-offs are played at a different level, you have to step up and we have just two more games ahead of us and there are four very big names represented.

"We've had a very punishing schedule towards the end of this season but I know we can go on further. There's a lot to play for."


Leeds: Hinton; Armstrong, Vickerman, Holtby, Biggs; Di Bernardo, Bedford; MacDonald, Ma'asi, McGee, Hooper, Myall, Dunbar, Fourie, Balding.
Replacements: Hepworth for Armstrong (19), Greendale for Di Bernardo (71), Edwards for Bedford (40), Rawlinson for Ma'asi (61), Hopcroft for McGee (61), Bouza for Dunbar (56), Lock for Balding (46).

Wasps: Van Gisbergen; Sackey, Waters, Flutey, Voyce; Staunton, Reddan; French, Ibanez, Holford, Shaw, Palmer, Worsley, Haskell, Dallaglio.
Replacements: Lewsey for Sackey (18), McMillan for Reddan (46), Payne for French (40), Ward for Ibanez (54), Birkett for Shaw (60), Webber for Worsley (61).
Not Used: Cipriani.

Att: 7,842

Ref: Andrew Small (RFU).




see also
Premiership play-off line-up
10 May 08 |  English
Leicester 31-28 Harlequins
08 May 08 |  English
Gloucester 8-6 Bath
10 May 08 |  English
Sale 7-17 London Irish
10 May 08 |  English
Premiership photos
10 May 08 |  Rugby Union


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