Coach Jones hails great 2012 for Welsh despite Wasps defeat
5:00pm Monday 31st December 2012 in Sport
London Welsh head coach Lyn Jones was left scratching his head after his side blew a 12-6 half-time lead to go down 15-34 to a resurgent London Wasps side at the Kassam Stadium.
The Exiles looked to be in control at the break but Joe Simpson’s sparkling individual try led to a London Welsh collapse and earned the visitors their first away win in the Aviva Premiership since October 2011.
Wasps ran in four second half tries through Simpson, Elliot Daly, Will Turner and Tom Varndell to destroy any hope of Jones’ side earning a losing bonus point, leaving the Exiles boss to look back on an incredible 2012.
“Throughout the year you get highs and you get lows, and this is a low for us,” said Jones.
“There’s a lot of disappointment in the changing room because we turned it around 12-6 and we were quite buoyed at the half.
“We derailed in the second half. We started to chase the game, lost field position and some absolutely needless penalties given away.
“We decided before the game that we would take the points - we’ve had too many games when we’ve put teams down to scrum and lost the ball.
"When we got the chance to get something out of the game we wanted to take it.
“But 2012 has been a great year for London Welsh. We started on January 2 against Rotherham in gale force winds. To achieve what we have, it’s been a historic year for the club.”
Scottish fly-half Gordon Ross had seemingly put the home side in control with four penalties, with two in reply from the boot of Nick Robinson.
The Wasps fly-half added a third shortly after the interval but then Simpson turned the game on its head, breaking off the tail of a scrappy lineout and scorching away for the corner.
Daly added a long-range penalty and then finished off an intricate handling move for Wasps’ second try of the afternoon.
A fifth Ross penalty looked to have moved Welsh into bonus point territory but substitute front-rower Taylor finished off a series of deft offloads in the corner, before Varndell touched down for his eleventh try of the season to the delight of Wasps’ director of rugby Dai Young.
“Second half they played with the quality I demanded from them, and then I always had confidence that our wide threats would do the damage for us,” he said.
“It’s great to be in the top six now but I’d rather be there at the end of the season. There’s a long way to go, but if you’d have told me at the start of the year that we would be where we are now, I would have snapped your hand off.
“Finally getting the away win - it wasn’t a monkey of my back because every game we’ve played, except Northampton, we’ve got a bonus point.
I don’t see many other scrum-halves scoring that try.
"He’s (Simpson) got some wheels on him, and when you give him the ball he’ll find a way to get to that line. And that probably was the turning point of the game.”
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