Bristol head coach Mark Tainton paid tribute to Tom Varndell for breaking the Premiership try-scoring record but admitted the achievement was soured by their comprehensive 42-8 defeat to Harlequins.
Varndell registered the 91st try of his career, putting him ahead of Sale’s Mark Cueto at the top of the chart. However, he was forced off the field shortly after and, while Tainton saluted his wing, he was unable to hide his dissatisfaction at how the evening unfolded.
He said: “It’s a magnificent effort and I’m delighted for him as it’s thoroughly deserved but him leaving the field with a toe injury and our defeat put a dampener on it.
“There is no divine right to win matches and maybe after our [32-26 defeat] at Northampton in our last Premiership game, we thought we were better than we are.
“We started slowly but by halftime we had clawed ourselves back into it but after the interval our intensity wasn’t good enough. We didn’t win enough possession and individual errors cost us as they didn’t have to work too hard for their tries.”
Quins had shown some indifferent form recently but they produced a classy performance to seal a first away win in the Premiership since May 2016.
Director of rugby John Kingston said: “It was still a tough game as they had two or three really strong periods of play but we had the rub of the green with the bounce of the ball at crucial times.
“After their performance at Northampton in defeat, we were under no illusions about the task in hand but we were excellent as we made them look ordinary.
“We should have been further ahead at the interval but it was a wearing down process and we were rewarded in that second half.”
Next week, Quins have a tough assignment against Bath.
Kingston said: “It hasn’t been all plain sailing this season but we’ve won eight out of 14 games. They are in fourth position in the league and that is where we aspire to be as we want to finish in the top four and win the Anglo-Welsh Cup as we are disappointed to be out of Europe.”
Source Article from http://www.espn.co.uk/rugby/story/_/id/18665110/mark-tainton-pays-tribute-bristol-tom-varndell-breaking-premiership-tryscoring-record-harlequins
Tainton bittersweet over Varndell record
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