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Gloucester fought back from a 13-5 half-time deficit to edge out Harlequins 24-20 in an entertaining fixture at Kingsholm on Saturday.
The hosts handed a debut to England international Olly Barkley while James Simpson-Daniel was given a well-deserved rest.
Harlequins took the lead after 13 minutes with a try from fullback Mike Brown following two missed penalties from fly-half Chris Malone.
Quins doubled their lead three minutes later through inform scrum-half Danny Care before Olly Morgan crossed the whitewash for Gloucester to narrow the visitors’ lead to 13-5 after 26 minutes of lively rugby.
Gloucester fly-half Willie Walker added nine points from the boot after the break before substitute Alasdair Strokosch dotted down for the hosts’ opening try – and a 21-13 lead.
But Quins regained their composure and hit back with a try of their own two minutes later though Malone to set-up a tense final 18 minutes.
But Barkley popped over a late penalty which was enough to ensure a narrow 24-20 victory over form side Quins.
Gloucester 24 Harlequins 20
Tries: Morgan, Strokosch
Pens: Walker (2), Barkley
Tries: Brown, Care, Malone
GLOUCESTER: Olly Morgan; Matthew Watkins, Mike Tindall (c), Olly Barkley, Lesley Vainikolo; Willie Walker, Gareth Cooper; Nick Wood, Olivier Azam, Carlos Nieto, Will James, Alex Brown, Alasdair Strokosch, Andy Hazell, Luke Narraway. Replacements: Andy Titterrell, Alasdair Dickinson, Marco Bortolami, Peter Buxton, Rory Lawson, Ryan Lamb, Mark Foster.
HARLEQUINS: Ceri Jones, Tani Fuga, Mike Ross, Ollie Kohn, George Robson, Chris Robshaw, Will Skinner (c) , Nick Easter, Danny Care, Chris Malone, Ugo Monye, Jordan Turner-Hall, Gonzalo Tiesi, David Strettle, Mike Brown. Replacements: Gary Botha, Mark Lambert, Jim Evans, Tom Guest, Andy Gomarsall, Tom Williams, Waisea Luveniyali.
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