Leicester came from behind to win 17-13 at Harlequins on Saturday to extend their lead at the top of the Aviva Premiership. An Alesana Tuilagi try and a penalty try, awarded after Quins had lost Will Skinner and Mark Lambert to the sin-bin, proved decisive.
Leicester's Marcos Ayerza and Quins' Joe Marler were both sent-off for fighting, leaving Quins' director of rugby, Conor O'Shea, feeling particularly aggrieved about his player's red card: "Does Joe feel hard-done by? I would be. Should he have reacted that way? Probably not. Was the provocation high? [Ayerza appeared to butt Marler, who responded with a flurry of punches] Absolutely."
Gloucester secured a 34-9 bonus-point win over Newcastle to strengthen their claims for a play-off place, while the Falcons are perilously close to bottom spot. After their 53-15 drubbing at the hands of Harlequins last week, Gloucester put together an assured second-half performance, scoring 24 unanswered points, with tries from Freddie Burns, Henry Trinder,Jonny May and Rory Lawson.
In the Magners League, Ospreys and Cardiff Blues played out a tense 21-21 draw. With both teams chasing play-off berths, the all-Welsh affair was predictably one of ill-discipline resulting in both teams knocking over five penalties and two drops goals each.
Ronan O'Gara kicked the winning penalty to help Munster to a last-minute 24-23 win over Leinster, despite losing their captain Paul O'Connell to an ankle injury; the lock is likely to miss the rest of the season. A bonus point is scant consolation for Leinster who led 20-9 at half time but who were unable to halt Munster's dominant pack in the second half.
Toulon overcame Stade Français 38-10 in the French championship, with Jonny Wilkinson kicking 18 points and Gavin Henson scoring a try on his debut to spark hopes of regaining his Wales place in time for the World Cup.Reuse content