For the newly-crowned European champions, Exeter Chiefs rocked up at Twickenham as strong favourites to add domestic honours after a long, pandemic struck season.
Director of Rugby Rob Baxter made changes to his winning formula of a week ago and it was enough to see his side breakdown a Wasps team on a late-season surge for an unlikely Premiership win.
EXETER CHIEFS PLAYER RATING
15 STUART HOGG
Conditions for a pig but not a Hogg. His first touch in the second minute looked like a knock-on, but he kicked on from there to make a number of incremental contributions for Chiefs – 6.
14 JACK NOWELL
The England ace gave away an early penalty from a misjudged aerial challenge on Umaga. Put a lot of pressure on Wasps and lead Exeter’s kick-chase – 6.5
13 HENRY SLADE
Dispelled Chiefs’ early nerves with a brilliantly taken try. A massive presence and leader in the midfield – 9
12 OLLIE DEVOTO
Winning a penalty with a carry in the 64th minute may have been his biggest contribution, but in the context of the day it was significant – 7
11 OLLY WOODBURN
Woodburn was given the nod over in form Tom O’Flaherty on the right-wing. Spilled the ball in the lead up to Umaga’s try. Not an evening for wingers – 6.
10 JOE SIMMONDS (CAPT)
A nicely waited kick for Woodburn was a promising early touch from in the form 10, who visibly grew into the match. While Umaga fizzled in parts, Simmonds simmered away nicely throughout – 8
9 JACK MAUNDER
Bizarrely changed his boots in the third minute of play. Shone in parts but Robson was the dominant nine today – 7
1 ALEC HEPBURN
Looked sharp with ball in hand, while simultaneously getting the better of All Black Toomaga-Allen at the set-piece – 7
2 LUKE COWAN-DICKIE
His ball security left a bit to be desired, but he was by no means alone in that category – 6
3 HARRY WILLIAMS
Really tested by West. Chiefs benefitted from some really odd calls at the scrum from Craig Maxwell-Keys – 6
4 SAM SKINNER
Picked ahead of Scottish international team-mate Jonny Gray, Skinner had high expectations coming into the game. Turned over the ball a few too many times and he knew it too – 5
5 JONNY HILL
Plenty of work at the coal face, where he was constantly industrious – 6
6 DAVE EWERS
The giant back row carried hard from the off. Bloodied and bruised, this win will have been sweet for the man overlooked by England – 7.5
7 JANNES KIRSTEN
Jannes Kirsten edged fellow Saffa Jacques Vermeulen in the back-row selection battle, and justified Baxter’s decision with some beastly and effective carrying – 8
8 SAM SIMMONDS
Largely kept in check by Wasps and the wet track maybe didn’t suit the modestly built No.8 – 6.5
16 JACK YEANDLE
Great darts from the veteran and they proved pivotal – 7
17 BEN MOON
A costly knock-on saw the England prop hammer in his fist into the turf in anger. Not the cameo he wanted – 5
18 TOMAS FRANCIS
More or less locked down the set-piece when he arrived. Job done – 6.
19 JONNY GRAY
Plenty of noise and in your face aggression from Gray. His lineout take in the 74th minute was a match-winning contribution – 8
20 JACQUES VERMEULEN
Not on long enough to rate.
21 SAM HIDALGO-CLYNE
Didn’t really have much time to truly put a stamp on the game – 6
22 GARETH STEENSON
23 IAN WHITTEN
Sign up to our mailing list for a weekly digest from the wide world of rugby.Sign Up Now