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Worcester Warriors 35 London Irish 11
YOU wait four-and-a-half years for a Worcester Warriors four-try bonus point, then two come along in the space of six days.
After a slow start to the game, Warriors ran riot at Sixways to thrash London Irish 35-11 and seal their first Aviva Premiership win of the season.
In a rampant second-half performance, Worcester were far too strong for the Exiles and claimed the full five points on offer with scores from Aleki Lutui, David Lemi, Semisi Taulava and Jon Clarke.
Worcester had failed to rack up four tries in a top-flight league match since May 2008 when they beat Newcastle, but broke that duck in a losing cause at Northampton Saints on Saturday, before following up with tonight’s impressive display.
Despite a half-an-hour delay to kick-off after the London Irish team coach was caught up in traffic caused by a crash on the M5, it was Warriors who appeared to be stuck in the changing rooms for the early stages.
The visitors made light of their curtailed preparation time to make a bright start and took the lead on 13 minutes after bossing the opening stages. Winger Marland Yarde made the initial break and his silky off-load found number eight Ofisa Treviranus, who showed good pace to charge in at the corner.
Inside-centre Steve Shingler missed the conversion, but soon made amends to stretch his side’s lead to 8-0 with a simple 19th-minute penalty.
Warriors finally woke up, though, and began to dominate, pulling a try back through hooker Lutui from a powerful line-out drive after 22 minutes.
Goode added the extras, then knocked over a simple kick after the hosts won a penalty for a dangerous tackle by Saliosi Tagicakibau, who was yellow-carded for his trouble.
After the break, Warriors continued to crank up the pressure and were held up on the line by desperate Irish defence, which saw them infringe and Goode made it 13-8.
Shingler cancelled out that penalty straight away and then missed another long-range chance to put his side back ahead.
Worcester never looked back from there, with Goode increasing the lead with another well-struck penalty, before the hosts grabbed their second try.
Clarke and Goode combined to send James Percival charging to the line. The second row was held up inches short, but the ball was fired wide to Lemi, who dived over.
Replacement number eight Semisi Taulava powered over for try number three, which Goode improved, before Clarke took the roof off Sixways with his late score to secure the extra point. Fly-half Goode added the conversion with the last kick of the game as the home fans erupted.
Warriors: Pennell; Walker (Clarke, 9), Grove, Matavesi, Lemi; Goode, Arr; Mullan, Lutui, Andress, Percival, Schofield (Gillies, 68), Chris Jones, Betty, Kvesic (Taulava, 56). Not used: Hayes, Ceri Jones, Currie, Frost, Carlisle.
Referee: Wayne Barnes.