Edinburgh fall to last-gasp try in West London

Substitute Olly Cracknell stunned Edinburgh by scoring a last-minute try to hand London Irish a 21-20 win in Round 3 of the EPCR Challenge Cup.

Edinburgh put in a phenomenal defensive effort in their first visit to the Brentford Community Stadium, with Irish throwing everything at the visitor’s line, however it wasn’t enough, with the Exiles powering over to claim a late win in a pulsating encounter.

Irish started proceedings brightly, repeatedly putting Edinburgh on the back foot, camped in their own territory. The capital side weathered the early storm to take the lead through Adam McBurney, the hooker seizing his opportunity to start by powering over after sustained Edinburgh pressure.

The lead only lasted a minute, with Irish striking immediately through former Edinburgh-man Kyle Rowe. The Exiles backline clicked spectacularly, going through the hands to give the former Scotland 7s star space to finish in the corner.

The game looked to be opening up, with Edinburgh regaining the lead through a smart backline move of their own. Kinghorn took the ball to the line to put Ramiro Moyano through a gap in the Irish defence; the Argentine scrambling over the line to score his fifth try in five appearances for Edinburgh.

Jaco Van der Walt – on to replace the injured Moyano – nudged a penalty on the half-time whistle, giving the visitors a 10-point lead at the break.

The second half started scrappily, with neither side able to seize momentum, however the arrears were cut when Oli Hoskins powered over for the hosts – the try awarded after a lengthy TMO check for obstruction.

Edinburgh came close to a spectacular score through Blair Kinghorn – who shifted from Fly-half to wing – only to be scuppered by a brilliant covering tackle.

The hosts found themselves down to 14 players thanks to a moment of madness from Augustin Creevy on the hour mark. The Argentine hooker struck Jamie Ritchie with a headbutt while the pair tussled on the deck, earning himself a red card, however the visitors were only able to capitalise on their player advantage through another Van der Walt penalty.

Irish threw everything at Edinburgh in the closing stages, and eventually broke through the Edinburgh rear-guard, with replacement Olly Cracknell forcing his way over the line to seal a heart-breaking defeat for the visitors.

Edinburgh return north with a losing bonus point and will look to bounce back immediately when they host Brive at DAM Health Stadium next Friday.

live commentary 3:15 PM Saturday 15 Jan 2022

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Kick-off 3:15 PM

London Irish

Edinburgh Rugby

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