Robshaw glad to repay Quins fans

Robshaw glad to repay Quins fans

Chris Robshaw (centre)

Chris Robshaw

First published in National Sport © by

Harlequins captain Chris Robshaw was delighted to repay the supporters who stuck by the club during relegation and the 'bloodgate' scandal with the Aviva Premiership title.

Robshaw produced an inspirational performance at Twickenham to be named man of the match as Harlequins defeated Leicester 30-27 to be crowned champions of England for the first time.

"Of course we have had our highs and lows, a bit of drama. It is nice to repay them," he said.

It has been a remarkable journey for Harlequins, who have risen from the wreckage of the biggest scandal to hit English rugby to champions in the space of three years.

Tom Williams, who had sparked the scandal when he bit on a fake blood capsule in the 2009 Heineken Cup quarter-final against Leinster, scored Harlequins' opening try.

Robshaw barged over for the second try and Nick Evans kicked 20 points as Harlequins opened a 30-13 lead and then withstood a late Tigers comeback.

Harlequins director of rugby Conor O'Shea paid tribute to the foundations that Dean Richards laid before he left the club under a cloud to serve a three-year ban over bloodgate.

"A couple of years ago this team said it wanted to create a different chapter in Quins history," O'Shea reflected. "It is a massive tribute to Dean, for putting so many of the structures in place, and a lot of people at the club including the owners. It's a very special day for the club. I'm so proud of the effort of those players."

For Leicester, it was a fifth defeat in eight consecutive Premiership finals. They could not match Harlequins' urgency and, at times, they were under pressure up front.

"We just needed to be a bit more composed," said director of rugby Richard Cockerill. "We will be better for the experience - but this wasn't a learning experience. We came here to win. We didn't and that was disappointing. That is sport. Someone has to lose and it is us, again."

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