Wasps and Harlequins fought out a fierce Allied Dunbar Premiership derby at Loftus Road on Sunday. In a match brimful of the proverbial blood, sweat and tears, Wasps were left doing the crying at the end as their bitter local rivals triumphed by a solitary point.

Wasps had performed brilliantly in winning at Saracens and much was expected. But they did not scale those heights again, and this was understandable. The main difference over the seven days was their tendency to impatience to creep back into the game.

They also suffered for their inability to second guess the somewhat erratic refereeing of Ashley Rowden, whose interpretation of the ruck and mauls rules seemed to change by the minute.

Quins' John Schuster, in fantastic form with the boot, contributed much to Wasps's downfall with 17 crucial points.

A scrappy opening, watched by a crowd just short of 7,000, saw Schuster and Kenny Logan exchange penalties. Wasps held a marginal territorial advantage, pinning Quins back. But the visitors broke out and drew first blood when slick passing down the right creating the opening for David Officer to go over, Schuster converting.

Logan's penalty kept Wasps in touch and after 30 minutes, they went in front. Alex King and Rob Henderson combined well again, and the fly-half provided the pass which sent Henderson crashing through the 'Quins' defence; when he was held up a yard short of the line, Laurence Scrase was in support to touch down under the posts. Logan converted and added a third penalty.

Just before half-time, Wasps gave away a penalty in a bad position, allowing Schuster to level the score, 16-16, at the break.

In such a tight game, the first try of the half looked as if it would prove decisive and Wasps went after the prize with a vengeance. Henerson again went close and Laurence Dallaglio's, making a 30-metre break of the back of a lineout, was denied by James Williams, who blocked his attempted chip kick.

It was not all one-way traffic, and Quins were dangerous on the counter attack, with Scrase forced into a dramatic tackle to deny Peter Mensah.

Schuster's fourth penalty put the visitors in front. Then Logan had two chances to restore parity, but, feeling the ill-effects of a heavy tackle, missed both and was replaced by Nick Greenstock.

The two teams continued to slog it out, and Schuster struck again with a well-struck drop goal, despite the close attention of Dallaglio.

In a grandstand finish, Greenstock grabbed an injury time try in the corner, leaving John Ufton with an extremely hard conversion. The angle proved too much for the Wasps full-back in his bid to land his first competitive kick of the season.

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