Haskell hoping for more of the same


Published: Monday 22nd December 2014 by The News Editor

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Wasps captain James Haskell is determined to build on a scripted debut at the Ricoh Arena that saw London Irish swept aside 48-16.

A record Aviva Premiership crowd of 28,254 assembled at the club’s new home to witness Coventry-born Andy Goode amass 33 points, itself a record total for an individual.

Wasps led just 18-16 at half-time and an important moment in their 147-year history was in danger of ending in disappointment until a second-half rally resulted in a bonus-point victory that lifted them to sixth in the table.

The challenge now facing the former London club is to continue attracting supporters to the west Midlands with their next home game taking place on January 4 against Sale.

“It was incredible, a special day. The fans were outstanding and the spectacle was brilliant,” Haskell said.

“Even when we had the successful days at Wasps, we didn’t quite get the stuff off the field right.

“Hopefully with what we’re offering at the Ricoh and this win, we can attract people and get a good, steady flow.

“People will have enjoyed the spectacle and will have left with a good memory. It was a great way to start.

“We’ve finished one chapter and started a new one, but one day in the sunshine doesn’t mean anything.”

Man of the match Goode, Joe Simpson, Elliot Daly and Andrea Masi scored tries – the last of which was delivered just seconds short of the final whistle – to leave Wasps just four points adrift of the play-offs.

“I was a bit nervous halfway through the first half because although we kicked the six penalties, it was not quite the running rugby we were looking to put on and it was quite close,” Haskell said.

“I said in the huddle to look around and enjoy what was a special day. There were always going to be some nerves and we had to be careful not to force things.”

Published: Monday 22nd December 2014 by The News Editor

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