Tuesday, December 02, 2014

Eye Spy : Quins given a Bath


Here's the latest report from our secret agent who has been keeping tabs on upcoming opposition for both Leinster & Ireland throughout the season...

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TARGET - Harlequins

WHO, WHEN, WHERE - Played Bath at the Rec last Friday.  They lost 6-25 without Brown, Marler, Robshaw & Yarde.  Though to be fair, Bath were missing Watson, Ford, Wilson, Attwood, Webber and of course the invaluable Gavin Henson.

OFFENCE -  Bath presented a very "Leinster-esque" style D with tight organisation + quick line speed and this effectively shut Quins down throughout; 57-43% possession, 62-38% territory shows awesome domination even for a home side at this level.

DEFENCE - Vulnerable to basic passing out wide early on...not sure if Leinster even need to catch them out with a pass inside - if anything that might suit Quins. When they had 3 in the bin it has to be said they fought bravely on their own goal-line.  Certainly can't fault their spirit.

SCRUMS - Munched by Bath pack from the off and never got better, though perhaps you'd expect Marler to shore things up a bit when he gets back to the side.

LINEOUTS - Shaky on their own throw early on but this was pretty much the only area where Quins got any traction.

BREAKDOWN - They'll need Robshaw back for sure but Wallace & Easter are probably the reason the score never reached "London Welsh" proportions with decent work at the breakdown.

DISCIPLINE - 22 total penalties, around a dozen in scrums, 3 forwards in the bin at once - nuff said.

INDIVIDUALS  - 

Ward - Decent carrier in the loose.  Sean Cronin Lite.  Didn't get much chance to run here but looked good when he did.

Sinckler - hard to give front rowers too much credit given scrum issues but this prop also looked lively in the loose.

Wallace - Led the tackle charts with 15.  Never gave up, won't against Leinster either.

Care & Evans - Quins offence is built around these two.  They never got going here, and thus the rest of the backline couldn't get a look in either.

VERDICT - Simply put, Quins are looking good for their 8th place in the Premiership.  

With Evans always able to find the territory and Care, Browne & Yarde able to feed off scraps there will always be dangers but a solid Leinster display without the ball same as last weekend should provide a path to victory.

Based on last weekend performances, Leinster would be disappointed not to come out on top over the back-to-back series.

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NEXT WEEK - As we're playing Quins again the following weekend, we'll give our secret agent the week off!  He'll be back the following week with a look ahead to the Christmas period in the Pro12. 
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