Pichot pounces to sting weary Wasps

You might call it a bad 72 hours at the office. Wasps, beaten in the most deflating circumstances by Northampton in a knife-edge Heineken Cup quarter-final three days previously, saw their chances of qualifying for the same tournament next season receive an unexpected battering from Bristol at Loftus Road last night. The visitors outscored them by three tries to one to reinforce their own drive towards a top five Premiership finish and, having soaked up any amount of injury-time pressure, will now fancy themselves to finish the job.

It did not require an oval-ball Nostradamus to predict that the Londoners might be a notch down following their painful European experience at Franklin's Gardens.

Joe Worsley started brightly enough, but even that plutonium-enriched bundle of energy quickly disappeared into the mistake-ridden morass around him. Martyn Wood's passing was imprecise, Phil Greening and Lawrence Dallaglio suffered outbreaks of Teflonitis - absolutely nothing stuck - and Kenny Logan's defensive work was less than devastating.

Bristol, by comparison, could hardly have been hungrier. Humiliated by their opponents in the Tetley's Bitter Cup semi-final at Reading - at one point in that match, Wasps led the West Countrymen by 44 clear points - they arrived in Shepherd's Bush with their hackles up and did everything in their power to impose themselves physically. Given the pugilistic presence of Dean Ryan and Garath Archer, not to mention the fiery little bantamweight known as Agustin Pichot, that power was considerable.

For a while, it looked as though Ryan and company might be overdoing it on the fistic front; Robin Goodliffe, the referee, played an entire concerto on his penny whistle before the first quarter was done and dusted. However, Wasps were not exactly paragons of virtue either and they allowed Henry Honiball to match Alex King, penalty for penalty. By the half-hour mark, the visitors' ball-carrying forwards had established a clear superiority.

Pichot was the first beneficiary. The Argentinian scrum-half darted forward as King shaped up an oblique inside pass close to a ruck and, having made the interception, sprinted 50 metres for the opening try. Seven minutes later, it was Fraser Waters' turn to commit a seven-point fumble as he conceded possession to another Test Puma, Eduardo Simone. The centre did not have to cover quite as much ground as his countryman, but the isolation in which he found himself was every bit as splendid.

There was more about Wasps after the break, especially when Paul Volley and the spherical Samoan, Trevor Leota, were introduced up front. King cut the arrears with a couple of penalties and then barged over from close range after his forwards, aided and abetted by the powerful Rob Henderson, worked up a real head of steam in the left corner. But Gareth Baber, a half-time replacement for Pichot, replied in kind five minutes later to wrap it up.

Wasps: Try King; Conversion Logan; Penalties King 6. Bristol: Tries Pichot, Simone, Baber; Conversions Honiball 2; Penalties Honiball 4.

Wasps: J Ufton; J Lewsey (S Roiser, 66), F Waters, M Denney (R Henderson, 58), K Logan; A King, M Wood; A Le Chevalier, P Greening (T Leota, 54), D Molloy, A Reed, S Shaw, L Dallaglio (capt), J Worsley, P Scrivener (P Volley, 54).

Bristol: L Best; D Dewdney, E Simone, J Mayer (M Back, 66), D Rees; H Honiball, A Pichot (G Baber, h-t); P Johnstone (L Gerrard, 66), B Williams, P Lemoine, G Archer, A Sheridan, M Salter, A Vander (C Short, 66), D Ryan (capt).

Referee: R Goodliffe (Yorkshire).

Arts & Entertainment
A stranger calls: Martin Freeman in ‘Fargo’
tvReview: New 10-part series brims with characters and stories

Arts & Entertainment
Shaun Evans as Endeavour interviews a prisoner as he tries to get to the bottom of a police cover up
Review: Second series comes to close with startling tale of police corruption and child abuse
Sport
Raheem Sterling and Luis Suarez celebrate during Liverpool's game with Norwich
football Another hurdle is out of the way for Brendan Rodgers' side
Arts & Entertainment
Charlotte Brontë, the English novelist, poet and the eldest of the three Bronte sisters who lived into adulthood, has been celebrated with a Google Doodle depicting her most famous novel, Jane Eyre.
arts + ents "Reader, they doodled her".

VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition iPad app?
Arts & Entertainment
Schwarzenegger winning Mr. Universe 1969
arts + entsCan you guess the celebrity from these British Pathe News clips?
News
Portrait of Queen Elizabeth-II by David Bailey which has been released to mark her 88th birthday
peoplePortrait released to mark monarch's 88th birthday
Arts & Entertainment
The star of the sitcom ‘Miranda’ is hugely popular with mainstream audiences
TVMiranda Hart lined up for ‘Generation Game’ revival
Life & Style
The writer, Gerda Saunders, with her mother, who also suffered with dementia before her death
healthGerda Saunders on the most formidable effect of her dementia
Sport
Manchester United manager David Moyes looks on during his side's defeat to Everton
footballBaines and Mirallas score against United as Everton keep alive hopes of a top-four finish
Sport
Tour de France 2014Sir Rodney Walker on organising the UK stages of this year’s race
Arts & Entertainment
Jessica Brown Findlay as Mary Yellan in ‘Jamaica Inn’
TVJessica Brown Findlay on playing the spirited heroine of Jamaica Inn
News
YouTube clocks up more than a billion users a month
mediaEuropean rival Dailymotion certainly thinks so
Arts & Entertainment
The original design with Charles' face clearly visible, which is on display around the capital
arts + ents
Arts & Entertainment
‘Self-Portrait Worshipping Christ’ (c943-57) by St Dunstan
books How British artists perfected the art of the self-portrait
News
People
News
Sir Cliff Richard is to release his hundredth album at age 72
PEOPLE
Caption competition
Caption competition
Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services

Day In a Page

Rubin ‘Hurricane’ Carter: The man who could have been champion of the world - and the Bob Dylan song that immortalised him

The man who could have been champion of the world

Rubin ‘Hurricane’ Carter and the Bob Dylan song that immortalised him
Didn’t she do well?

Didn’t she do well?

Miranda Hart lined up for ‘Generation Game’ revival
The Middle East we must confront in the future will be a Mafiastan ruled by money

The Middle East we must confront in the future will be a Mafiastan ruled by money

In Iraq, mafiosi already run almost the entire oil output of the south of the country
Before they were famous

Before they were famous

Can you guess the celebrity from these British Pathe News clips?
Martin Freeman’s casting in Fargo is genius

Martin Freeman’s casting in Fargo is a stroke of genius

Series is brimming with characters and stories all its own
How I brokered a peace deal with Robert Mugabe: Roy Agyemang reveals the delicate diplomacy needed to get Zimbabwe’s President to sit down with the BBC

How I brokered a peace deal with Robert Mugabe

Roy Agyemang reveals the delicate diplomacy needed to get Zimbabwe’s President to sit down with the BBC
Video of British Muslims dancing to Pharrell Williams's hit Happy attacked as 'sinful'

British Muslims's Happy video attacked as 'sinful'

The four-minute clip by Honesty Policy has had more than 300,000 hits on YouTube
Church of England-raised Michael Williams describes the unexpected joys in learning about his family's Jewish faith

Michael Williams: Do as I do, not as I pray

Church of England-raised Williams describes the unexpected joys in learning about his family's Jewish faith
A History of the First World War in 100 moments: A visit to the Front Line by the Prime Minister's wife

A History of the First World War in 100 moments

A visit to the Front Line by the Prime Minister's wife
Comedian Jenny Collier: 'Sexism I experienced on stand-up circuit should be extinct'

Jenny Collier: 'Sexism on stand-up circuit should be extinct'

The comedian's appearance at a show on the eve of International Women's Day was cancelled because they had "too many women" on the bill
Cannes Film Festival: Ken Loach and Mike Leigh to fight it out for the Palme d'Or

Cannes Film Festival

Ken Loach and Mike Leigh to fight it out for the Palme d'Or
The concept album makes surprise top ten return with neolithic opus from Jethro Tull's Ian Anderson

The concept album makes surprise top ten return

Neolithic opus from Jethro Tull's Ian Anderson is unexpected success
Lichen is the surprise new ingredient on fine-dining menus, thanks to our love of Scandinavian and Indian cuisines

Lichen is surprise new ingredient on fine-dining menus

Emily Jupp discovers how it can give a unique, smoky flavour to our cooking
10 best baking books

10 best baking books

Planning a spot of baking this bank holiday weekend? From old favourites to new releases, here’s ten cookbooks for you
Jury still out on Manchester City boss Manuel Pellegrini

Jury still out on Pellegrini

Draw with Sunderland raises questions over Manchester City manager's ability to motivate and unify his players