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Harlequins 31-17 Bath: Marcus Smith stars in Northampton’s jump to second place

Harlequins 31-17 Bath: Tabai Matson’s men make five attempts to jump Northampton back to second place as Marcus Smith returns to star with 14 points against baseline opponents.

  • Andre Esterhuizen’s first two attempts made the initial stages go as expected
  • However, Bath bounced back from Joe Marler’s yellow card and went 17-12 up
  • However, the Harlequins regained control after the break when Marcus Smith scored
  • Joe Marchant got in between the points before Smith got his second try.


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A late rally secured the Harlequins a ninth straight bonus point win at home, as they posted a 31-17 Premiership win over winless Bath, remaining at the bottom of the table.

Bath had lost nine of their 10 previous league games and conceded 71 points at home to the Saracens six days earlier and, when they conceded two early attempts, they looked ready for another long afternoon but, encouraged by Sam Underhill, they struggled to get back into the lead. -12 in the interval.

Quins rejected the kickable penalties early on in search of attempts. It wasn’t complacency, but the mark of a team that had won nine of its 10 league games at the Stoop with a bonus point. They simply lacked their usual precision.

Marcus Smith was influential once again when Harlequins returned to second place in the table.

Marcus Smith was influential once again when Harlequins returned to second place in the table.

The hosts made a quick start when two attempts by Andre Esterhuizen gave them a 12-3 lead from the start.

The hosts made a quick start when two attempts by Andre Esterhuizen gave them a 12-3 lead from the start.

The hosts made a quick start when two attempts by Andre Esterhuizen gave them a 12-3 lead from the start.

Kicking penalties into touch allowed two attempts for center Andre Esterhuizen. The first, after three minutes, followed a foray on the blind side and the second was driven by Marcus Smith who, after picking up a ball that was bouncing in retreat, created space with a flat pass and Danny Care released the South African.

Orlando Bailey threw a penalty between attempts and whatever Bath was lacking, it was no effort.

They lost their number eight Jaco Coetzee after five minutes with a head injury and struggled to recover after England mainstay Joe Marler was sent to the trash for an armless entry to winger Tom De Granville.

Esterhuizen had tackled De Glanville but Marler, almost trying to get out of the way, ended up in a crouched position and De Glanville landed head first after colliding with him, playing for six minutes before he was taken away.

England head coach Eddie Jones will hope Marler will not be cited because another loose-headed mainstay, Beno Obano, suffered a knee injury.

Marler had barely had time to find a seat when Bath scored the penalty they had kicked on touch.

However, Bath took advantage of a yellow card for Joe Marler to score 14 unanswered points.

However, Bath took advantage of a yellow card for Joe Marler to score 14 unanswered points.

However, Bath took advantage of a yellow card for Joe Marler to score 14 unanswered points.

Smith then finished in style to change the score in favor of Quins after the break.

Smith then finished in style to change the score in favor of Quins after the break.

Smith then finished in style to change the score in favor of Quins after the break.

Josh McNally secured the shot, and when Underhill circled behind the back, the defense was exposed and the wing crossed the line.

Bath made the most of their one-man lead five minutes later when Will Stuart finished a series of drives to give them a 17-12 interval lead.

Quins had his moments, but passes were not fulfilled, wrong choices were made and met with motivated resistance.

Joe Marchant also tried it before Smith got the second of the afternoon.

Joe Marchant also tried it before Smith got the second of the afternoon.

Joe Marchant also tried it before Smith got the second of the afternoon.

Stuart Hooper's Bath are bottom of the Gallagher Premiership with some losses from five

Stuart Hooper's Bath are bottom of the Gallagher Premiership with some losses from five

Stuart Hooper’s Bath are bottom of the Gallagher Premiership with some losses from five

But they had Smith and five minutes after the restart, he did a loop run from a scrum and, seeing Ruaridh McConnochie worried about Green and Louis Lynagh, and Max Clark trying to cover his inside and outside, ran between them to restore the home team advantage.

Quins squandered several opportunities through a mix of unforced errors and challenging defense, but the bonus point and victory were secured with six minutes remaining when Alex Dombrandt’s quick hands gave Joe Marchant the space to score in the corner. and Smith then set up the scoreboard. second from the center.

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