Smith hails in-form Aulika

  • Last Updated: April 20 2013, 20:03 BST

Post-match reaction to London Irish's 47-28 victory over London Welsh.

Guy Armitage celebrates his try for London Irish
Guy Armitage celebrates his try for London Irish

London Irish head coach Brian Smith paid tribute to Halani Aulika after the powerhouse prop continued his try-scoring run with a double in the Exiles' 47-28 Aviva Premiership win over London Welsh.

Aulika now has scored 11 tries in all competitions this season and his brace was part of a seven-try riot for Irish against a Welsh side already guaranteed to finish bottom of the table.

Guy Armitage also notched two for Irish and Chris Hala'ufia, Sailosi Tagicakibau and Matt Garvey all also crossed, while Seb Stegmann, Nick Scott and Greg Bateman scored for Lyn Jones' visitors.

But it was the contribution of Aulika, who now has four tries in his last four league games, that really stood out for Smith.

"I'm delighted for him," Smith said. "I think the whole team wanted him to stay on to get a hat-trick. For a tighthead to get a hat-trick, you wouldn't have seen that every day.

"Once you get into the opposition 22 he is a real strike-force. He knows his way to the try-line.

"I think he is clearly the best short-range try scorer in the league, and there's a lot of him.

"The game was a good one for the neutral. Both teams wanted to play.

"We were running from our own try-line and they did too. There are things we are happy about as well as things we are not.

"Coaches are never happy, but it was a pretty good day all round."

Meanwhile, Jones called on his side to show some more commitment in their final Premiership clash of the season despite their lowly league position.

"Some things that have been good for us this year have been our attitude and line speed, but that disappeared out there," he said.

"We allowed them to bring their wingers into the game. I thought they were very good and influenced the game. We didn't control that at all.

"You need to be motivated and that's the key going into the last game. That can't come from me it has to come from that group.

"I'm sure if we show a lot of commitment and the right attitude then we might be able to go and get something against Worcester. But that is not down to me - that is down to the players.

"We were in the game all the time. We played some good rugby, but we kept gifting London Irish points from the restarts and from sloppy errors really.

"You need the edge to get stuck in; if you don't you will have a difficult time in this league.

"We need to enjoy every minute. It was always going to be a tough year and it has not disappointed.

"It is a big league. We have not had the time or the money to be as competitive as we would like to be. We have to say goodbye."


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