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Gloucester 33-30 London Irish

Gloucester (23) 33
Tries: Voyce, Dawidiuk, penalty try
Conversions:
Taylor 3 Penalties: Taylor 3, Burns
London Irish (17) 30
Tries: Gray, Ojo, Shingler
Conversions: Homer 3 Penalties: Homer 3

Gloucester v London Irish
London Irish have only ever won one premiership game at Kingsholm in 2006

Gloucester made it three home wins out of three this season as they hung on to beat London Irish at sunny Kingsholm.

Tries from winger Tom Voyce, hooker Darren Dawidiuk and a penalty try helped them leapfrog above the Exiles.

Number eight Alex Gray, winger Topsy Ojo and centre Steven Shingler crossed for the visitors.

Gloucester's Tim Taylor and Irish full-back Tom Homer shared 15 points with the boot but Freddie Burns' late penalty proved the matchwinner.

Irish did at least squeeze a losing bonus point, but Gloucester's unbeaten Premiership home record at their Kingsholm fortress is now extended to 22 games.

The home side made a bad start when fly-half Taylor's attempt to launch a counter-attack saw his loose pass picked off by Gray inside 60 seconds, giving the former Newcastle man a simple canter to the posts.

But Taylor made amends by putting the Cherry and Whites on the board with a fourth-minute penalty, before the hosts crafted a beautiful try.

Centre Henry Trinder cut through the Exiles midfield and moved the ball on to Olly Morgan, who sent Voyce haring in at the left corner, Taylor adding a testing conversion and a penalty soon after for a 13-7 lead.

Homer had been off target with his second and third penalty efforts, but landed his fourth to trim the gap to three points after 24 minutes. However, Taylor quickly added his third penalty before the Exiles saw Chris Hala'ufia sin-binned.

They put themselves in a position to win the game and that's all you can ask every week

London Irish coach Toby Booth

The Tongan number eight was fortunate not to see red after a reckless high shot on Morgan, his moment of madness proving costly as Irish's creaking scrum found it impossible to stem the tide a man down, conceding a penalty try when Gray kicked the ball away with the home pack rumbling over the line.

Gloucester looked well on course for victory with a 23-10 advantage late in the first half. But Irish refused to buckle, responding in devastating fashion with 17 points inside eight minutes either side of the break.

Ojo raced 40 yards up the middle to finish brilliantly from Dan Bowden's slick inside pass, Homer converting.

The England Under-20s cap then cut the gap to three points with a penalty early in the second half before Adam Thompstone stripped Charlie Sharples of the ball to set a position for Shingler's first Irish try, Homer again adding the extras.

The lead did not last long as Gloucester went straight up the other end for Dawidiuk to crash past some hesitant defence for a converted score.

Back came the visitors, Thompstone only being denied a try by desperate covering from Sharples. But the pressure created another penalty chance which Homer gratefully received to tie the scores just before the hour, replacement Burns kicking what proved to be the winning penalty on 62 minutes.

In roasting conditions, the hosts held on for the final quarter, but Burns' failure to land a simple chance late on could have proved costly had Ojo not been denied a winning try when Bowden's chip ahead bounced away from the winger in the dying moments.

VIEWS FROM THE DRESSING ROOM

Gloucester head coach Bryan Redpath told BBC Gloucestershire:
"We made it pretty hard on ourselves at the start with an interception and seven easy points but we clawed our way back into the game pretty well after that.

"I would have liked to have finished the game with another try and more intensity but the boys were pretty tired by then.

"On a whole the game was a pretty evenly matched contest but our scrum was very strong which I was delighted with.

"At points there were some poor basics from both sides. As I told the team at half-time, we conceded too many simple things but in the second half we came out and scored two excellent tries."

London Irish coach Toby Booth:

"The innocence of youth provides a lot of things. It provides a fluctuation in performance but it also provides excitement and a lot of hope for the future of English rugby because there were a lot of youngsters out there who were English qualified and have a point to prove. They want to upset the old guard and I find that very refreshing.

"There was a good positive approach from both sides and it was going to come down to some key moments and executions. It came down to a couple of key bounces of the ball. If that ball bounces forward at the end, then Topsy scores and it's over.

"But I am absolutely delighted and proud of the effort of our team out there because they put themselves in a position to win the game and that's all you can ask every week."

LINE-UPS

Gloucester: Morgan; Sharples, Trinder, May, Voyce; Taylor, Runciman; Wood, Dawidiuk, Harden; Savage, James; Buxton, Narraway, Deacon.

Replacements: Lewis for Runciman (52), Burns for Taylor (59), Cortese for Dawidiuk (65), Simpson-Daniel for Voyce (68).

Not Used: Murphy, Chistolini, Lyons, Evans.

London Irish: Homer; Ojo, Joseph, Shingler, Thompstone; Bowden, Allinson; Dermody, Paice, Lahiff; Kennedy, Sandford; Evans, Gray, Hala'ufia.

Replacements: Rautenbach for Lahiff (44), Danaher for Sandford (48), Gibson for Hala'ufia (61), G Armitage for Joseph (63), Hodgson for Allinson (63), Buckland for Paice (73).

Not Used: George, Jarvis.

Sin Bin: Hala'ufia (29).

Attendance: 10,864.

Referee: Greg Garner.



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see also
Gloucester 23-6 Bath
24 Sep 11 |  Rugby Union
London Irish 46-29 Newcastle
24 Sep 11 |  Rugby Union
Rugby Union commentaries
14 Feb 13 |  Rugby Union


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