Premiership: Wasps 22-16 Leicester Tigers – Wasps hold on to go top
Wasps resisted a second-half comeback to beat Leicester on Sunday
Tries from Tommy Taylor, Christian Wade and Dan Robson gave the hosts a 19-3 lead at the break
The much-improved Tigers fought back to get a losing bonus-point in the second-half
Wasps withstood a second-half onslaught from Leicester to go top of the Premiership standings with a 22-16 win at the Ricoh Arena on Sunday.
The hosts return to the top of the Premiership but they were made to work very, very hard in what was a hotly contested East-Midlands derby played in front of a bumper crowd of 27,930.
After 30 minutes, Wasps had three tries but Leicester dragged themselves back into it in the second half as Aaron Mauger’s reign began with a losing bonus-point.
However, both Wasps and England head coach Eddie Jones will be concerned that flanker James Haskell lasted just 38 seconds on his return from a seven-month injury absence, after appearing to be knocked out when tackling Freddie Burns….Watch here.
Wasps made the perfect start as Christian Wade dived over for his ninth Premiership try of the season after just four minutes.
Elliot Daly’s dink over the top caused Leicester players to run into each other, giving the winger the chance to hack the ball forward before pouncing on it.
The league’s leading points scorer, Jimmy Gopperth, converted to give the hosts an early seven-point advantage.
Good god @WaspsRugby are putting on a lesson in attacking rugby. So fast. The tigers look out on there feet!!!
— Tom Varndell (@Tom_Varndell) January 8, 2017
And the hosts added a second try soon when hooker Tommy Taylor collected the ball from his own line-out throw before forcing down for his third try of the season. Gopperth this time couldn’t add the extras, 12-0.
Try number three came just before the half-hour mark as scrum-half Dan Robson sniped over from close range. Gopperth added the conversion, 19-0.
Owen Williams’ slotted penalties either side of the break to get Tigers on the scoreboard before, after a check with the TMO, Peter Betham was confirmed as crossing for Leicester after 51 minutes.
Burns nailed the conversion as Leicester continued to drag themselves back into the game,19-13.
But that was as good as it got as Gopperth’s penalty late on sealed the win for the home side, who move back ahead of Saracens at the top of the table.
— Wasps (@WaspsRugby) January 8, 2017