September 29th, 2016

Wasps boss Dai Young brushes off talk of top four despite emphatic victory over Harlequins

Wasps boss Dai Young brushes off talk of top four despite emphatic victory over Harlequins Wasps boss Dai Young brushes off talk of top four despite emphatic victory over Harlequins
Updated: 5:00 pm, Mar 10, 2016

WASPS director of rugby Dai Young has once again shrugged off talk of finishing inside the top four in the Aviva Premiership despite picking up a sixth consecutive win at home to Harlequins.

Another convincing 42-10 victory has cemented Wasps’ third-place postion and they currently sit five points ahead of fifth-placed Northampton Saints following Sunday’s win.

But Young is refusing to be drawn on his side’s current league position because he feels there is going to be plenty more movements in the coming weeks.

“It’s a bit premature to talk about the top four, top six has to be our priority for Europe,” said Young. “But if we’ve got three or four games of the season to go and we’re still in touching distance of the top four, then we’ll start talking about it and give it a real crack.

“We’d love to be in that top four, but where we are at this moment in time, top six is our priority and I think if you look at the games we’ve got in the next couple of weeks, Gloucester away, Leicester and Sale at home, if we don’t get the results we want, then we’re out of the top six.

“I think other people run away with the excitement of it a bit. I’m just trying to be realistic and pragmatic. If things go our way, we’ve got a chance, but there are a lot of games that are easily won or lost and it’s so tight in the table.

“My job is to keep everyone’s feet on the ground and to keep pushing the players on to get more out of them. If we can do that, I’m sure we won’t be far off in the end.”

Jake Cooper-Woolley powered his way over for the opening try on 23 minutes and 12 minutes before the break Christian Wade crossed for try number two and with Jimmy Gopperth adding the extras Wasps were 14-0 in front.

Harlequins replied with Luke Wallace scoring their first try of the match but soon after Nathan Hughes forced his way over the line and again Gopperth scored the extras to give the hosts a 21-5 lead at half-time.

Ten minutes after the break Quins scored their second try when Charlie Matthews went over in the left corner but again Botica missed the difficult conversion.

Wasps secured a bonus point thanks to flanker Thomas Young in the right corner and Gopperth landed the tricky conversion for 28-10.

A fifth try came on 67 minutes when Siale Piutau powered over for his first try for Wasps and Wade scored his second of the match, with Gopperth maintaining his 100 per cent record from the tee.

There was still time for Frank Halai to set up Brendan Macken for a sixth and final try which Alex Lozowski converted for 42-10.

“We’ve got to be realistic – Quins have a lot more players missing than we have, but I’m pleased with a bonus-point win,” said Young.

“I thought we played some good stuff, scored some good tries and defended pretty well, so there are a lot of things to be pleased with, but we know we’ve got to keep on going and there are plenty of things we need to work hard on this week, but we will do that with smiles on our faces.

“During this Six Nations period, we’ve really started to find some form. Now what we’ve got to make sure of is that we maintain it.”

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