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Harlequins 6-6 Bath

Harlequins (0) 6
Pens: Evans 2
Bath (3) 6
Pens: Barkley 2

Bath's Sam Vesty is held up by Tom Williams of Harlequins
Bath's Sam Vesty is held up by Tom Williams of Harlequins

Nick Evans slotted two second-half penalties as Harlequins hit back to earn a draw from a hard-fought but error-strewn and forgettable encounter.

Olly Barkley kicked a penalty either side of the break to put Bath 6-0 up.

But although the visitors, who welcomed back England skipper Lewis Moody after an eye injury, edged the first half, Quins were well worth their two points.

Moody had been out for 30 days after bruising his left eye but gave a typically rumbustious performance.

The former Leicester forward suffered the injury in a collision with Gloucester full-back Charlie Sharples and his vision is still not perfect and may never be.

But he was desperate to get some game time ahead of England's opening autumn international against New Zealand next Saturday and came through despite a cut to the head which needed treatment.

Moody had hoped to help his Bath side secure a first victory in six attempts at the Twickenham Stoop.

But even his enthusiastic display could not inspire his team-mates in a match which offered plenty of effort but little in the way of quality.

Quins made the more promising start and Evans collected his own chip to launch a surge forward but Tom Williams failed to hold on to the final pass.

Evans then missed a simple penalty attempt before Barkley landed a penalty from inside his own half to put the visitors ahead.

Lewis Moody
Moody had to leave the field after five minutes with a cut

The lively Evans then cut a brilliant line off scrum-half Karl Dickson but he failed to hold the pass and a certain try went begging.

Barkley also missed a simple penalty and Bath's Sam Vesty was halted by Mike Brown after a fine break.

But a second Barkley kick put Bath 6-0 ahead only for two Evans kicks in the space of five minutes to level the scores.

And although both sides searched for a winning score in the closing stages, neither team could fashion an opportunity.

Bath and England flanker Lewis Moody:
"I was a bit nervous going into the game that I would not pick the ball up as quickly but it was fine. Even in the dwindling light conditions it did not affect me.

"There was a very similar situation where the guy was lining up the kick and I didn't hold back in going to charge him down. That was a good mental thing.

"The eye's all right - it was a case of getting my eye in, so to speak.

"I just wanted to get out and play. I've had three or four weeks without a game and that's never good for a player, it's frustrating.

"Having three or four weeks off is not ideal for your fitness but I was really happy to be on the field at the end."

Harlequins director of rugby Conor O'Shea:
"I thought both teams tried to play a lot of rugby. The fact there were no tries does not make it a shocking spectacle.

"I thought on the balance of play we deserved to win."

Harlequins: Brown; Williams, Lowe, Turner-Hall, Camacho; Evans, Dickson, Jones; Gray, Andress, Vallejos Cinalli, Robson, Robshaw, Skinner, Guest.

Replacements: Brooker for Gray (59), Lambert for Andress (52).
Not Used: Collier, Browne, York, Moore, Clegg, O. Smith.

Bath: Abendanon; Carraro, Banahan, Barkley, Biggs; Vesty, Claassens; Catt, Dixon, Bell, Hooper, Grewcock, Taylor, Moody, Watson.

Replacements: Flatman for Catt (62), C. Fernandez Lobbe for Grewcock (62), Skirving for Watson (12).
Not Used: Batty, Jarvis, McMillan, Williams, Cuthbert.

Att: 14,047.

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see also
Guscott's predictions
30 Oct 10 |  English
Skinner signs new Harlequins deal
29 Oct 10 |  Harlequins
Gloucester 33-26 Harlequins
23 Oct 10 |  English
Meehan unworried by Bath results
28 Oct 10 |  Bath
Moody poised for playing return
27 Oct 10 |  Rugby Union
Bath aiming for top two - Blofeld
25 Oct 10 |  Bath
Leicester 21-15 Bath
23 Oct 10 |  English

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