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Page last updated at 16:47 GMT, Saturday, 26 March 2011

Harlequins 53-15 Gloucester

Harlequins (24) 53
Tries: Gray, Robson, Monye 3, Lowe 2 Cons: Clegg 6 Pens: Clegg 2
Gloucester (3) 15
Tries: Trinder, Molenaar Cons: Robinson Pens: Robinson

Ugo Monye
Harlequins winger Ugo Monye crossed for tries both sides of half time

An Ugo Monye hat-trick saw Harlequins end Gloucester's 11-match unbeaten run with a crushing 53-15 win to keep their own Premiership play-off hopes alive.

Quins forwards battered their way to a 24-3 half-time lead with tries from Joe Gray, George Robson and Monye, added to nine points from Rory Clegg's boot.

Monye and George Lowe added two tries each after the break.

Henry Trinder pulled a try back for Gloucester before Tim Molenaar scored in the last play of the match.

Gloucester showed signs of a hangover from last weekend's LV= Cup win as they started sluggishly.

Quins appeared to still be smarting from their last-gasp defeat by Newcastle in that competition's semi-final two weeks ago as they set about their task in belligerent fashion.

The hosts began at a furious pace with Nick Easter and Danny Care, back from England duty, at the heart of everything they did well.

Gloucester's handling on the floor earned Clegg his first shot at goal which he sailed home for a 3-0 Quins lead with 10 minutes gone.

The Cherry and Whites then lost try machine Charlie Sharples on 12 minutes when he was twisted in a tackle and had to be replaced by Jonny May.

The hosts made it clear they were intent on taking the game to Gloucester up front, where there was plenty of niggle off the ball, and earned dividends from attacking narrow channels.

Gloucester, who had made wholesale changes to their pack from Sunday, struggled with the intensity.

The breakthrough came after continuous pressure ended in Gray's try, after good work down the blindside, as the Quins hooker steamrollered Robinson from two metres out.

Clegg added the conversion to make it 10-0 with 25 minutes gone.

Robinson soon pulled three points back for Gloucester with a penalty from the Quins' 22.

But the kick only inspired Harlequins to come back harder and quick phases saw first Robson and then Monye cross out wide in quick succession.

After the break an unchanged Gloucester side were soon under pressure again and Clegg extended the home side's lead with another penalty.

Monye sprinted clear in the 50th minute to claim his brace, which Clegg converted, before Lowe went in for his first 10 minutes later.

Gloucester did bring on fresh legs and it was substitute Trinder who pulled one back for Gloucester, but Quins hit back through winger Lowe and Monye once again.

Molenaar touched down in the dying seconds but Robinson missed the conversion to cap a desolate afternoon for the West Country club.

Harlequins director of rugby Conor O'Shea:
"It came from a combination of a lot of hurt we felt from a couple of weeks ago and the run we have been having.

"Anybody that was down here and watched the Newcastle game in the LV= Cup would have seen some fantastic rugby but we just didn't finish.

"At times we probably played better rugby in that game than we did today.

"And with Gloucester you are bound to have a comedown of some sorts when you win a bit of silverware and then they were hit by a team that had a lot of pain, a lot of hurt.

Gloucester head coach Bryan Redpath:
"We were dreadful. I think Quins had more energy than us, that was pretty obvious.

"I thought they looked a bit more energised than we did but, on the whole, I thought we were dreadful.

"We fell off tackles today that we hadn't fallen off previously and made it pretty easy to score against us on certain occasions.

"In the first half the game was gone at 24-3 because we never controlled any field position or possession.

"It happened we have got to get on with it and deal with it."

Harlequins: Brown; Camacho, Lowe, Turner-Hall, Monye; Clegg, Care; Marler, Gray, Andress; Kohn, Robshaw; Fa'asavalu, Robson, Easter.

Replacements: Williams for Brown (71), Urdapilleta for Turner-Hall (58), Moore for Care (67), Jones for Marler (55), Brooker for Gray (55), Lambert for Andress (55), Vallejos for Kohn (58), Skinner for Robshaw (64).

Gloucester: Burns; Sharples, Molenaar, Fuimaono-Sapolu, Voyce; Robinson, R Lawson; Dickinson, S Lawson, Doran-Jones; James, Attwood; Strokosch, Qera, Narraway.

Replacements: May for Sharples (13), Trinder for Fuimaono-Sapolu (51), Pasqualin for R. Lawson (73), Thomas for Dickinson (60), Azam for S. Lawson (56), Harden for Doran-Jones (51), Brown for Attwood (67), Cox for Qera (56).

Sin Bin: James (58).

Att: 14,282

Ref: JP Doyle (RFU).

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see also
Harlequins 20-21 Newcastle
11 Mar 11 |  English
Gloucester 34-7 Newcastle
20 Mar 11 |  Rugby Union

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