I'm going to be honest here, I'm a bit of Wasps fan. I've supported them since way back in the early 90's, when the club was based at Sudbury and you could stand anywhere in the ground you liked, just as long as you could squeeze in. It was the days of players like Rob Andrew, Steve Bates and Dean Ryan were all front and center. Rugby and Wasps have come a long way since the and been through some rough times and a few moves before settling down at the Ricoh and developing into the superstar-laden side they are now.
One thing that's always held through with Wasps though, is their desire to play attractive running Rugby and over the last couple of seasons, Dai Young has built a solid (if not always dominant pack) around Joe Launchbury, Ashley Johnson and James Haskell and an all singing all dancing backline around Danny Cipriani and Jimmy Gopperth.
It's made for some scintillating rugby and Wasps more than anyone else have adopted he interchangeable playmaker role. It fits them perfectly deploying a highly effective multi-layer attack pattern which allowsCiprianin to float out of position and attack the line as a strike runner safe in the knowledge Gopperth can run the show in his absence.
Throughout the game against Leicester, they used the uncertainty these screen moves create, exploiting the lead runner and trail runner options, to devastating effect. In Nizam Carrs fantastic try we saw them start the attack using deep passing in behind the line to move the ball wide. Then as they recycle, Mcintyre runs a lead line and with Youngs drifting out onto Gopperth Cipriani puts him through the yawning gap it leaves.
It's great Rugby illustrating that Wasps have excellent decision makers throughout the back line. It allows them to play reactively (or heads up) like no other team in the league quite can. With finishers like Daly, Wade and Le Roux getting on the end of the moves it takes a good defensive effort to shut them out.
Leicester very nearly took the match but the crowd's memories will certainly be of Wasps wonderful attacking play.
Author: The Dead Ball Area