Saturday, 14th April 2018 @ 17:45
Kick off 19:45
Kick off 15:00
Kick off 15:00
Kick off 16:00
Kick off 15:00
Three late converted scores from Jason Woodward, Jake Polledri and Ruan Ackermann saw Gloucester beat Harlequins 37-9 at Kingsholm.
The scores stood at just 13-9 at the break but a combination of missed chances and errors from Quins allowed Gloucester to make their second half dominance pay with a flurry of late tries.
Harlequins arrived at Kingsholm on the back of last week's 5-35 defeat at the hands of London Irish at The Stoop and were soon behind again when Calum Braley crossed early in the first half.
In the opening phases, both sides exchanged early penalties, but Gloucester's opener came just eight minutes into the encounter.
With the first of many spells in Quins' half, Billy Twelvetrees punched through the midfield from Mark Atkinson's pass. The space he created for himself allowed a dummy to be thrown, before his eventual offload found scrum-half Braley to race over.
In the aftermath of the try, Jack Clifford was forced off; Luke Wallace on in his place.
From there, Gloucester were found guilty of racking up the penalties and Marcus Smith sent over his second kick of the day to reduce the deficit to just four, 15 minutes into the match.
Gloucester could have had their second try 20 minutes in, but smart pressure defence from Quins forced the hosts out wide and play went dead from a looped pass out to nobody.
Behind by just four Harlequins were whistled once more at the breakdown and Twelvetrees kept up his impressive record with the boot. With a number of penalties given against Quins, Gloucester decided twice to go to the corner when points may have been the better option, but their efforts were flawed, and Harlequins came away unscathed.
On the stroke of half-time Harlequins had the chance once again to reduce the deficit and Smith did so, following Jeremy Thrush's intentional knock-on.
Early in the second half both sides could have crossed. First it was Gloucester from Woodward's scything run before Mike Brown cleverly picked from the ruck and raced downfield, but Billy Burns was there to bring him down.
A four-point deficit became seven, when Quins were found guilty of not rolling away and Twelvetrees stuck over his third penalty of the day.
Having already lost Clifford in this bruising encounter Harlequins then lost both Joe Gray and Mike Brown early in the second half with knocks; Elia Elia and James Lang came on in their places.
Gloucester, ruing their missed chances, were pinned back as Harlequins could have crossed on the 54th minute. With a well-worked rolling maul from the line out, Quins opted to go along the backs and with the flung-out pass, Alofa Alofa spilt with only Charlie Sharples to beat.
As the match ticked over the hour mark, and the score still 16-9, Gloucester got more of their hands on the ball with replacements Ben Vellacott and Ruan Ackermann providing much needed energy.
The first of their three late tries came in the 72nd minute when Gloucester benefitted from turnover ball on Gabriel Ibitoye. Atkinson played in Trinder down the left, who darted and offloaded to Woodward who got over in the corner.
23-9 turned into 30-9 on the 75th minute when eventual Man of the Match Jake Polledri barged through from close range to cross.
Salt was then rubbed firmly in the wounds in the final move of the match. With the Cherry and Whites sniffing for a try bonus point, Gloucester went to the corner from a penalty. The rolling maul was set and Ackermann was on hand to dot down.
Twelvetrees rounded off his perfect day with the boot with another conversion.
Following today's result, Harlequins will have a week off due to European proceedings before picking up the closing stages of their league commitments against Worcester Warriors on Saturday 28th April.