Bye, Bye Dallaglio (almost)

Yesterday, I had a long day as I travelled up to Leeds for the last game of the Guinness Premiership. Wasps were playing for the playoff slot.

Lawrence Dallaglio

This would be the last game in the regular season of the Guinness Premiership for Lawrence Dallaglio.

Last week, we were fifth in the table on 60 points. Quins were on 61, Sale on 63. Bath were on 68 and Gloucester were on 70. During the week we played our last game in hand and beat Newcastle to go into third place on 65 points. Tigers were on 59.

A win against Leeds would see us in the playoffs. Lose and we would probably be passed by Sale, Quins or Tigers. We might lost our top four place.

The playoffs at the end of the season were introduced for two reasons, firstly the premiership is affected by fixture congestion. This year was a massive example of this with the World Cup. Wasps in particular were badly affected as we supply so many players to England (we were 10th at one point in the season soon after the world cup). The playoffs provide a way of compensating for this effect. Secondly, it does provide the season with a 'grand finale'.

Leeds came out fighting. The score went to 9-0 to Leeds, then 16-7. We eventually came back and took control of the game, going ahead 16-17.

The final score was 28-45. Leeds acquitted themselves well, with a great intercept try from the halfway line. Fortunately Wasps scored six tries, with three from Tom Voyce and a try each from Raphael Ibanez, Fraser Waters and Tom Voyce. This was a bonus point win, putting Wasps on 70.

Obligingly, Gloucester beat Bath (at one point the Wasps crowd in the opposite stand at Leeds were calling 'Glaw-sterrr, Glaw-sterrr!') This meant that Bath finish the season in third place, and Wasps have a home playoff.

For fourth place, Sale lost to Irish and Tigers scored a late try against Quins - thus Tigers get fourth place.

This season really has gone to the wire, with everything to play for.

Next week: Wasps play Bath, and Gloucester play Tigers. Assuming he is on the field, Dallaglio gets (at least) one more premiership game.