Wasps fight for win in double header at Ricoh Arena
By Sam Rourke
Wasps secured a bonus point victory over Richmond in front of a huge crowd at the Ricoh Arena
Wasps secured a bonus point victory over Richmond in front of a huge crowd at the Ricoh Arena. Celebrating Wasps Heritage Day, Wasps enjoyed a 31-15 win in a double header, following the men’s Champions Cup clash with Bath.
The results sees Wasps maintain their spot in the top 4, keeping pressure on the three sides ahead of them. Liz Crake was the star of the show for the black and gold crossing the whitewash for three of Wasps five tries. However, there was also a fantastic solo effort from winger Tova Derk.
Wasps started the brighter of the two sides. The forwards provided an excellent attacking platform, as they continued to test the Richmond defence. Claudia MacDonald finally sniping over for close range for her third of the season.
Richmond hit back with a penalty shortly afterwards but it was Wasps who scored the second try of the game shortly before half-time. Once again, the hosts spent a long time camped on the Richmond line, but the visitors defended valiantly to repel Wasps. Liz Crake finally powered over in the corner. A touchline conversion gave Wasps a 14-3 lead at the half.
The set piece dominated for much of the game, with the scrum proving a real weapon for Wasps. With the visitors reduced to 14 from a high tackle, Tova Derk showed her pace and footwork for an outstanding solo score. After Abby Dow fielded a kick down field, Tova raced in from 40m to dot the ball down in the corner under pressure from the Richmond defender.
Richmond reduced the deficit to 19-10 shortly afterwards with strong direct running, Grace Moore finishing off the score. However, Wasps picked up their bonus point try just after the hour mark. The lineout accuracy continued, followed by a powerful driving maul. Liz Crake was on hand to score her second of the game shortly afterwards from the base of a ruck.
The visitors refused to lie down as they secured the next score. Despite some heroic Wasps defence, Richmond continued to attack and Jess Wooden scored in the corner.
Wasps had the final score of the game. Continuing the theme of outstanding set piece work and strong carrying, Wasps drove Richmond to within inches of the try line. To score her third try of the day, Liz Crake carried over and dotted down. An excellent conversion saw a 31-15 final score.
The victory, in front of an electric crowd, sees Wasps pick up their fourth win of the season. With a strong performance up front, they continue to provide excellent attacking opportunities and will hope to keep that momentum as they travel to Darlington Mowden Park Sharks next week.