February must have seemed an awfully long time ago for fans of London Wasps, but after the agonies of watching their side suffer 10 succesive defeats, they finally had reason to celebrate.
A victory over struggling Worcester was a bonus in itself but Guy Thomspon’s try earned the extra point too. Hardly vintage stuff, but earlier tries from Matt Mullen, Christian Wade – a fine effort – and Jake Cooper-Woolley and three penalties from Andy Goode, who could not convert any of the tries, and one from Jose Carlisle were enough to see of Worcester. The Warriors managed only a try from the wing Josh Drauniniu, converted by Danny Gray, and three penalties by Ignacio Mieres.
The first half was even but ill-disciplined, was evenly contested but tries from Wade and Cooper-Woolley soon after the restart took the game away from Worcester, who are stranded at the foot of the table.
Wasps dominated the scrum to allow Ashley Johnson and Mullan to impress in the loose. Charlie Davies was lively at scrum-half but the backs could not supply the dangerous Wade.
For Worcester only Drauniniu and David Lemi emerged with any credit, and the loss of Mieres before half-time did not help.
Worcester suffered two early blows with Goode’s third-minute penalty giving Wasps the lead as George Porter left the field with a nasty head wound, but the Warriors soon responded with two simple penalties from Mieres.
Goode tied the scores with his second penalty but a third from Mieres gave the visitors a 9-6 advantage at the end of a dreadful first quarter, but then first try of the game after 30 minutes gave Wasps the lead. Worcester lost possession and Wasps moved the ball along the line to Josh Bassett, who was hauled down just short of the line by Mieres. However, Mullan crashed over.
Both Goode and Mieres missed penalties before Mieres limped off to be replaced by Danny Gray.
Wasps, 11-9 ahead at the interval, extended that lead with an excellent try. From a scrum on halfway, the No 8 Nathan Hughes picked up to feed scrum-half Davies and his expertly judged kick was collected by Wade, who raced away for the try.
Johnson soon nicked a Worcester throw and ran 50 metres to create a try for prop Cooper-Woolley, and Goode kicked his third penalty before, with 15 minutes to go, Worcester scored their first try with Drauniniu finishing off some sustained pressure.
However, Warriors’ replacement hooker Chris Brooker was yellow-carded, and Wasps secured victory with Thompson’s try and a Carlisle penalty.
London Wasps: Daly; Wade, Jacobs, Bell, Bassett; Goode (Carlisle, 69), Davies; Mullan (McIntyre, 72), Festuccia (Lindsay, 65), Cooper-Woolley (Taylor, 72), Launchbury, Myall (Palmer, 61), Johnson, Jones, Hughes (Thompson, 53).
Worcester: Pennell; Drauniniu, Fatiaki (Hammond, 70), Matavesi, Lemi; Mieres (Gray, 36), Hodgson (Su’a, 77); Porter (Andrew, 10), Shervington (Brooker, 41), Murray (Andress, 41), Williams, Jones (Schofield, 60), Thomas, Abbott, Taulava (Betty, 60)
Referee: Greg Garner