Author: isport

Harlequins FC Boss Sounds Rival Warning

Conor O’Shea, the Director of Rugby of Harlequins FC, the champions of the Aviva Premiership Rugby Union league, the top league in English professional rugby, has delivered a warning towards the team’s rivals in the league, stating that The Quins are yet to fulfill their true potential, falling way short of it during their title winning season in 2011/12.

The champions are currently without their string of international stars and their absence became extremely evident as they suffered a 31-15 defeat at the hands of Castres in a pre-season friendly a few days back, as they look to get up and running to defend the title that they staked claim to back in May.

The Quins begin their defense of the title on the 1st of September as they take on local rivals the London Wasps in a London double header at Twickenham Stoop and Harlequins FC is looking to make the best possible start by going one up against their arch local rivals. And although the defeat to Castres was not the sort of start that O’Shea was looking for at the beginning of the season, he has insisted that the team is determined to excel the performances of the side that thumped the Leicester Tigers in the playoff final for the Premiership title.

Speaking about the performances of his side, O’Shea made it clear that the squad is nowhere near where they are capable of. He added that the team wants to be the best in everything it does and that includes petty stats as well – admitting that the side has plenty of room where it needs to improve upon. He added that Harlequins FC will rotate the squad and use all the players so that all of them are fit when the business end of the season begins.

Harlequins can Repeat Success

Nick Easter, the former England captain and No. 8 for the Aviva Premiership Rugby Union side Harlequin FC believes that the champions are in a good state at the moment and they have the momentum with them to mount a challenge at securing back to back Premiership titles.

The Quins were in fine form last season, managing to remain on top of the leader board before the four top teams went into the playoff rounds and they and they carried that form into the playoffs as well, defeating the record champions the Leicester Tigers in the final to secure their first top flight title in the new format.

And Easter, who has been with the club since 2004 and has been witness to all the scandals and pains that the clubs has gone through including the Blood-gate scandal and relegation to the RFU Championship believes that the team is in a brilliant position with all the young players being blooded into the side which only means a secure future for Harlequin FC.

Moreover, the likes of Chris Robshaw, the club captain and the new signings that the club has made in the close season will prove pivotal as the club goes in search for the elusive consecutive titles and also readies itself for a challenge in Europe in the Heineken Cup. Easter also lauded the Director of Rugby Conor O’Shea as the man responsible for turning around the fortunes of the club.

Easter also believes that the kind of form the youngsters have shown for Harlequin FC in the JP Morgan Asset Management Premiership Rugby 7s means that O’Shea will have a lot more options at his disposal and can surprise the opponents with his team selection as he can draw from an extremely talented squad of players of youth and experience.

Diprose Extends Contract with Harlequins

Tony Diprose, the defense coach as well as the academy manager of newly crowned Aviva Premiership champions Harlequin FC has signed a new two year contract extension with the club that will keep him at the Twickenham Stoop till the end of 2014/15 season.

The Quins, which finished the regular season at the top of the table and won the playoff final against the Leicester Tigers handsomely boats one of the best defensive records in all the major leagues in Europe and it is being believed that this contract extension is just reward for the work he has done in turning the side into championship material.

Asked about this new contract extension, the 39 year old stated that it feels as if he is learning, developing and maturing hugely by being a part of the coaching set up of the first team and added that after the success of the season, it just makes him more driven to continue the cycle of success and he is keen to keep the side rolling and also looking forward to develop some of the players from the academy of Harlequin FC to stars for the first team.

Having retired from playing in 2006 after 15 long years at the top with various clubs, Diprose took over the duties of the academy at the club in 2008 and has since then, turned it into one of the best academies in the country whose infrastructure can match any of the club’s academies in France.

Conor O’Shea, the Director of Rugby for Harlequin FC stated that the work that Tony has done with first team as well as with developing the youngsters has been nothing but phenomenal and it is only good for the club to keep hold of him for as long as they possibly can.


French side Toulon has set up an all French affair in the semi final of the European Challenge Cup against Stade Francais after they defeated the Aviva Premiership side the Harlequins Football Club in the quarter final match to send the current holders and three time winners of the competition packing.

Toulon were, by far, the most dominant side in the match, outscoring the English side by three ties to one with a score of 37-8 thanks to tries from Steffon Armitage, Sebastien Tillous and Benjamin Lapyeyre, with only Danny Care pulling one back in the dying minutes of the match, which was nothing but a consolation for The Quins.

Toulon, who were runners up in the competition in the 2010 edition saw Jonny Wilkinson covert one chance as well as five penalties and their Australian centre recruit Matt Giteau also managing a penalty score.

Harlequins Football Club has been sitting on top of the Aviva Premiership from the start almost, ahead of favourites Gloucester and it was expected that they would do well in Europe too but the way they were knocked out of the competition was humiliating for the club.

The Quins had to field a much depleted side thanks to injuries to their new recruit from New Zealand Nick Evans at fly half as well as Chris Robshaw, the captain and in a way, started the match already on the back foot but not even the biggest hater of The Quins would have expected such a dreadful performance from the Aviva Premiership side.

This means that the semi finals of the competitions could still turn out to be an all French affair if the other two sides left in the competition manage to overcome their respective opponents but the conquerors of Harlequins Football Club, Toulon look favorites to secure the title.


Harlequins beat Worcester at The Stoop to stay at the top the table, seven points clear of the second team, Saracens.

They beat Worcester 16 to 14, with just two points separating the two sides.

A heavy downpour prior to the match made playing conditions very tough for both the teams and the Premiership leaders had to battle it out to get past Worcester to keep their lead intact.

It was Evan’s boots that ensured that Harlequins win in the match though he missed two chances in the second half. Worcester put in a lot of pressure in the early stages of the match and this was rewarded after Gray converted a sixth minute penalty to get them very important points. George Lowe returned to play for the Harlequins for the first time since November and he produced a brilliant try saving tackle to deny the flying wing of Worcester but Benjamin bundled over just a few seconds later.

Mike Brown, the English full back who recently returned from domestic duties came very close to scoring the first points for Harlequins but he just was not able to get his hands on a chip ahead.

Marcel Garvey made a brilliant sixty yard break but could not keep his composure and make the decisive pass to Benjamin. Harlequins finally scored some points when Evans successfully converted his penalty in the twenty second minute of the game.

Harlequins gained a very crucial five point advantage just after sixty minutes into the game as Evans scored a three pointer but Worcester were proving to be a determined oppositions as they won a penalty from the scrum and Gray made most of the chances to make it 16 points to 14. Evans missed two important kicks at goals as Harlequins scrum won their team two excellent late penalties but they both proved to be just academic.

Harlequins won a thrilling encounter against Worcester to take a seven point lead over Saracens at the top of the Aviva Premiership.


Harlequins will be entering into the last and final game of the Heineken cup pool game and will be putting in their best effort to make sure they emerge victorious and make it to the quarter final stage of the Heineken cup.

They have brought about one crucial change to the position of the players hoping that this might help them to perform better than that of their last game which ended in a victory against Gloucester.

Harlequins are quite contented with their performance and hoping to continue the winning streak and finally make it to the quarter final league.

Sam Smith has been introduced to play at the starting lineup which has been initiated in the left wing. Monye on the other hand has been moving on to the right wiong position and Tom Williams has decided to take an off from the current matches as he wants to be with his wife who is expecting the birth of their baby.

Both, Joe Marler and Chris booker have been brought to the front alongside and will be playing alongside James Johnston and this hopes to be quite a promising position for an excellent game play.

There will be no changes brought to be the back row and will consist of the same old Chris Rob Shaw, Nick Easter and Maurie Fa’asavalu. With these changes at hand, Harlequins will keep up the same spirit of the game they have put on in the last match against Gloucester.

They will make sure that all their shots are perfectly times and all the players remained focused at all times trying to understand the weak areas of their opponents and make the most out of it by attacking their opponent’s weak areas. Lets hope to see whether they do manage to win it.


Harlequins were unconvincing in their return to winning ways after last week’s defeat to Saracens.

At a number of times in their clash with Exeter they looked likely to record back to back defeats before coming through 11-9.

Quins lost for the first time in the league last weekend and the pressure was on for them to bounce back in style against Exeter. It was an unconvincing performance from the league leaders, in particular from Rory Clegg.

Having previously missed five of his six attempts in the game, the fly half stepped up with four minutes remaining on the clock to successfully kick the Quins to a narrow victory, they would have been expected to win a lot more comfortably.

Following their back to back games against Toulouse, the Quins have suffered from something of a European hangover with poor displays against both Saracens and Exeter and the pressure will be on for an instant bounce back with not only victory against Northampton this weekend, but also a good performance. With the Six Nations 2012 betting picking up momentum now, Harlequins need to make sure they have enough points on the board to cope without their internationals when the tournament starts.

Despite Clegg’s disappointing display with the boot he was impressive in the rest of his game, defending well and providing a strong platform for his backs to build on. But the Quins have been used to a far more dominant and consistent display at fly half from Kiwi, Nick Evans.

Since arriving in the Premiership two years ago Exeter have consistently surprised people with their strong performances and this was also the case against the league leaders. They dominated up front and defended bravely throughout the game.

In fact it is fair to say they deserved more from the game than the losing bonus point they ended up with. Whilst they were reliant on missed kicks from Clegg, Exeter came closer to defeating Quins than any side had done prior to Sarries victory last weekend.

It will be interesting to see how Harlequins respond to this seeming dip in form, the next few games will no doubt tell us a lot about their title credentials, and whether they are contenders for the Betfair Heineken cup Rugby betting.

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14 wins in a row, top of the Premiership and looking good in their European and LV Cup groups; things are looking good at the Stoop so far this season. The next two games look set to prove an all together new level of challenge for on form Harlequins when they take on French Champions and early pace setters in the Top 14, Toulouse.

The Quins are already seen by many within the game as Champions elect of England and their encounter with Toulouse will show just how far they are from being a real force to be reckoned with on the European stage. If they can get a result in either game against one of the favourites for the Heineken Cup Trophy they will have to be taken seriously come the business end of the European season.

Quins will be confident they are capable of giving Toulouse a real game. Last month, Gloucester, who have looked mediocre in the Premiership this season gave Toulouse a real run for their money and it took a moment of magic from Poitrenaud to salvage the win for Toulouse. Quins have looked a class above Gloucester so far this season, and if they can turn it on against the French giants the next two encounters could be amongst the games of the season.

The Quins need to ensure they don’t show Toulouse too much respect. With names such as McAlister, Burgess and Pointrenaud to name but a few it is of the utmost importance that Harlequins can impose themselves on the game and not freeze in the face of these, undoubtedly world class performers.

If the Quins can keep their head though, and maintain the form they have shown throughout this campaign so far they will give Toulouse a real game though, particularly in a full Twickenham Stoop Stadium on Friday night. The Quins have seemingly already proved themselves as a domestic force to be reckoned with over the next few years, the next two games give them the chance to prove themselves on the bigger stage.


Harlequins Rugby Union were unable prevent a defeat in the hands of Northampton. Harlequins Rugby Union lost the match 16-20 to Northampton. Saints took a 13-point lead through a Chris Ashton try and eight points from the boot of Shane Geraghty before Nick Evans pulled three points back.

Quins took the lead after the interval with another two Evans penalties and a converted George Lowe try. But the visitors replied with a try from skipper Dylan Hartley, converted by Geraghty, to secure the win.

The result left Quins still searching for their first win of the season while it was Saints’ first Premiership win at The Stoop for six years. The visitors were dominant up front in the first half and deservedly scored the opening try when winger Ashton raced on to a kick through from James Downey.

It was a different Quins side that emerged after the interval, with the backs producing far more urgency and two more Evans penalties brought them back in touch.


Harlequins only drew with Wasps in a match which ended 29-29. Nick Easter (fresh from watching his teammates from the England Rugby Hospitality Tickets) scored Quins first try from a simple switch with fly-half Nick Evans before Andy Powell crossed on his debut for Wasps.

Tom Varndell streaked away to put Wasps in charge after Rikki Flutey’s break, while Evans and Mark van Gisbergen were on target with the boot throughout.

Mike Brown’s converted second-half try gave Quins a three-point lead but a late Wasps penalty cancelled it out.

The game was a tight affair throughout, characterised by Evans and Van Gisbergen’s exchanges with the boot.

Easter’s try came after two minutes when Evans ghosted past Simon Shaw from a line-out to feed back inside for the England number eight to coast in under the posts.

The former All Black added the conversion and after the Wasps full-back opened his account Evans quickly re-established Quins seven-point gap with a penalty of his own.

Powell’s try, after some good work from Varndell and skipper Tom Rees, was converted to bring the scores level.

Flutey marked his return to Wasps by turning provider when he deftly gathered Jordan Turner-Hall’s spill from a tackle and found Varndell with his offload.