O'Shea praises heroic Lowe
March 31, 2012
Conor O'Shea singled out George Lowe for praise after Harlequins' win over Saracens © Getty Images
Harlequins boss Conor O'Shea singled out George Lowe as a player with an England future after the centre's heroics in their win over Saracens at Wembley.
Harlequins opened a 24-12 lead with tries from Jordan Turner-Hall, Lowe and Danny Care but required a heroic defensive performance to secure the victory.
Lowe produced two brilliant try-saving tackles in the space of three minutes as Saracens threw the kitchen sink at the Premiership leaders.
Eventually, when Harlequins had Joe Marler and Care in the sin-bin, Richard Wigglesworth stole over for the try on his comeback from injury.
Harlequins then saw Nick Easter replace Marler in the sin-bin and they finished the match with 13 men but hung for the victory that opens a six-point gap on top of the Premiership table.
Lowe is already on the radar of England head coach Stuart Lancaster and Harlequins director of rugby Conor O'Shea believes he could make the summer tour to South Africa.
England will be taking around 40 players as they have two midweek fixtures as well as three Tests against the Springboks.
"I have to pinch myself to think that he is 22," O'Shea said. "George is an outstanding outside centre and hopefully he can put himself on the map (for England) during the end of the season having been unfortunate with injury earlier. If the team is being successful then people get recognised."
The match was watched by a world record crowd of 83,671, with Saracens chief Ed Griffiths keen to use their recent clashes with Quins as an example for the future.
A total of 165,781 fans have watched the two Premiership matches between Harlequins and Saracens this season, with 82,000 turning out for the reverse fixture at Twickenham on December 27.
Griffiths wants the big-stage Christmas and Easter games between the two London sides to become regular fixtures.
"We have been pushing for the Premiership to put their best fixtures in the best positions," Griffiths said. "It makes sense to put your big games at big times of the year. If Quins-Saracens at Christmas and Saracens-Quins in March become annual events I am sure we will get this type of crowd every year."
© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.
Martin Gillingham looks ahead to what he believes is the most remarkable ever climax to the league phase of the Top 14
With just two rounds left in the regular season, we look at the prospects of the teams taking part in the Championship play-offs
Joe Simpson talks to Charlie Morgan about loss, Wasps and being England's game-breaker
It is 100 years this week since the last international match played in Europe before the outbreak of World War One. Rewind remembers the fixture's longest-living survivor