Harlequins 23 - 9 Bath

Match info: Premiership at The Stoop

Date: 13/04/2013 KO: 14:15 Att: 14,326

Home team/scorers Scores Away team/scorers

Harlequins

TriesCare (46) Monye (64)ConversionsBotiga (46, 64)PenaltiesBotiga (30, 34, 58)

23
vs
9

Bath

PenaltiesDonald (6, 40) Devoto (22)

FT (ht: 6-9)

  • Last Updated: April 13 2013, 18:07 BST

Post-match reaction to Harlequins' victory over Bath.

Ben Botica: Kicked 13 points for Quins
Ben Botica: Kicked 13 points for Quins

Harlequins director of rugby Conor O'Shea warned his team's Aviva Premiership rivals that the defending champions were in no mood to relinquish the title after ending their recent slump with a 23-9 home victory over Bath.

Quins headed into the game on the back of three straight Premiership defeats and last Sunday's home loss against Munster in the Heineken Cup quarter-finals, but a trademark opportunist try from England scrum-half Danny Care and a 30th-birthday touchdown by winger Ugo Monye kept Quins' top-four play-off hopes firmly on course.

"That was a big mental test for us today," said O'Shea, whose side overturned a 9-6 half-time deficit in the rain, having just returned from a sunshine training trip to Spain.

"Getting a break was an important thing to do," O'Shea added.

"We've done so much right this season and met so many challenges and this was another challenge for us.

"We are looking forward to the run-in. We know we have one more game to win to be top four.

"But somebody is going to have to take this title off us because we ain't giving it up.

"We've already won a trophy (the LV= Cup) and been in a Heineken Cup quarter-final.

"Emotionally, we were pretty shattered to lose that but all 23, including the young lads, came on in difficult conditions and played their part.

"We can play a lot better, but days like today are tough days and I thought we saw a bit of energy and confidence go back into the side."

Replacement Ben Botica, on for injured centre Matt Hopper, took the kicking duties from regular marksman Nick Evans and contributed Quins' other 13 points.

O'Shea said: "Ben's got a longer range. He took the first kick when he came on and nailed it.

"He's a high percentage kicker. He doesn't miss much and, once he did that into the wind from that angle, he just thought 'I'll keep on going'. It was between the two of them and they're two relaxed Kiwis."

Defeat was a blow to Bath's bid for Heineken Cup rugby next season, but head coach Gary Gold said: "I thought the guys showed a huge amount of character throughout the whole game."

Defensive blunders cost them dearly as Care and Monye both cashed in and Gold acknowledged: "Unfortunately we made a couple of crucial errors.

"That's how good Quins are. You make those errors and they are going to make you pay."

His assistant Toby Booth said: "While it's mathematically possible (to qualify for the Heineken Cup) we'll keep fighting because we need to go into the final weekend with something to play for."


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