European Challenge Cup: Wasps deny Edinburgh to reach semi-finals

Wasps will play either Lyon or Glasgow for a place in this year’s final, after Barbeary’s late try broke Edinburgh hearts

Last Updated: 07/05/22 5:40pm

Wasps celebrate after securing a 34-30 victory over Edinburgh in the European Challenge Cup quarter-finals

Alfie Barbeary’s late try steered Wasps to a dramatic 34-30 victory over Edinburgh in the European Challenge Cup quarter-finals.

Edinburgh led 30-27 in the closing stages, but the Premiership side completed a late turnaround when Barbeary dived over five minutes from time.

The hosts seized the initiative with an impressive first-half display courtesy of tries from Ben Vellacott and Adam McBurney, although Wasps responded through Jimmy Gopperth and Biyi Alo.

Tom West put Wasps ahead but Edinburgh levelled through Magnus Bradbury, before a 73rd-minute penalty from Emiliano Boffelli put the Scottish side on the cusp of the semi-finals.

However, they conceded a penalty directly from the restart which saw Connor Boyle sin-binned, and Wasps duly capitalised.

Edinburgh defended valiantly in a bid to preserve their lead, defying Wasps’ initial line-out drive, but Barbeary wasn’t to be denied, forcing himself over the line to register a precious try.

Barbeary booked Wasps' semi-final spot with a dramatic late try

Barbeary booked Wasps’ semi-final spot with a dramatic late try

Gopperth converted to extend Wasps’ cushion to four points, but the visitors were forced to withstand late pressure to seal their spot in the semi-finals.

Wasps squandered a commanding lead to draw 42-42 with London Irish last weekend, and head coach Lee Blackett praised his side’s character as they inflicted Edinburgh’s second home defeat of the campaign.

“If you had told me before the game Edinburgh were going to score 30 points I’d have told you there was no chance we were going to win that game, so credit to the boys for scoring that many points against a quality defence,” Blackett admitted.

Wasps will now play either Lyon or Glasgow for a place in this year’s final, while Edinburgh will set their sights on securing a play-off place in the United Rugby Championship.

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