Anglo-Welsh Cup

Gloucester 47 London Irish 7

A strong Gloucester side had too much for London Irish as the visitors were trounced 47-7 at Kingsholm in round two of the Anglo-Welsh Cup.

The bonus-point win keeps Gloucester in contention in Pool One but they face stiff competition from Bath and Wasps if they are to win their group and keep alive their hopes of appearing in the final, which will be held for the first time on their home ground in March.

Gloucester scored tries through Willi Heinz, Val Rapava-Ruskin, Tom Hudson, Jeremy Thrush, Henry Trinder, Calum Braley and Jake Polledri. Billy Burns added two conversions and Billy Twelvetrees four.

Irish's sole response was a try from Oli Hoskins which Greig Tonks converted.

Gloucester dominated a forgettable and scoreless first quarter. The visitors' line-out and scrum both struggled but Gloucester lacked the finesse to capitalise with poor handling of a slippery ball on a rain-sodden pitch being their major downfall.

Irish defended stoutly but after 22 minutes, the hosts took the lead when from 10 metres out, Heinz spotted a gap, took a quick penalty and darted over.

Four minutes later and Gloucester had their second try. Burns and Richard Hibbard made large dents in the Irish defence before Rapava-Ruskin forced his way over from close range.

It took Irish until the 33rd minute to mount their first real attack when Theo Brophy-Clews made a neat break before his pass was deliberately knocked forward by Heinz, who was yellow-carded.

Burns assumed the scrum-half role but the skipper's absence was hardly missed as Gloucester remained in control and extended their lead when Twelvetrees sent Hudson in under the posts, with the Irish defence nowhere. Burns' second conversion left the hosts with a 19-0 interval lead.

Soon after the restart, Heinz returned as Henry Purdy left the field to be replaced by Andy Symons, just in time to see Irish open their account.

A forward drive saw Hoskins power over before the impressive Burns was substituted for Lloyd Evans as Gloucester resumed control.

Sustained forward pressure resulted in the bonus-point try for Thrush before Trinder skated along the left touchline for another as Gloucester built up an impregnable lead.

Further tries from replacement scrum-half Braley and Polledri in the final seven minutes completed the rout before James Hanson was yellow-carded for sacking an Irish line-out - but still the visitors could not add to their tally.