Lyn Jones was left to rue London Welsh’s error count as they slipped to a 29-19 Aviva Premiership defeat to London Wasps at Adams Park, writes Adam Knight.
Though outscored four tries to two Welsh were in contention for a losing bonus point when a Gordon Ross penalty took them to within seven points with two minutes remaining.
But Welsh were unable to keep their discipline, giving away a penalty in the dying seconds which Lee Thomas duly converted - the first time the Exiles have come away from a league game empty-handed in five matches.
Former St Mary's University student Christian Wade and Tom Varndell did the damage for the hosts, both bagging doubles to help Wasps to their third victory of the season.
Tries from Phil Mackenzie and Franck Montanella in the second half gave Welsh hope but in the end it was too little too late for Jones’ side, leaving him to reflect on what might have been had they got out of the blocks quicker.
“It’s not about the last minute of the game, it’s about the first 20,” he said.
“We went 8-0 down from some poor decisions from us and we have to be a lot tidier and cleaner in our game early on.
“Unforced errors are the difference between being a Championship player and a Premiership player - players are adapting to the intensity and the responsibility that unforced errors will cost you points and lots of yards.
“We all appreciate bonus points are much-valued in the league and much sought-after.
“The mood in the changing room is one of huge disappointment - not so much because of losing but, of throwing away a losing bonus point at the end.
“We were competitive - there was a big effort by our players and you can’t ask much more as a coach if they’re giving 100%.
“I think we’re playing some good rugby but then we take the pressure off and let ourselves down sometimes.”
Though his side have turned heads with some big performances in their debut season, Jones was happy to admit his side were second best on a day which saw Wasps’ wing pair and full-back Hugo Southwell run amok.
“I thought their back three was the difference in the game - perhaps if we’d had their back three it would have been different, but we don’t,” added Jones.
“Their back three was hugely influential - they took their opportunities and I thought their opportunities were 50/50 chances, but they still took them. That’s what you pay big bucks for.”
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