Harlequins confident they can upset the odds again Champions Cup clash with Toulouse

Quins were good value for their win over Bordeaux (Getty Images)
Quins were good value for their win over Bordeaux (Getty Images)

Harlequins’ reward for their stunning 42-41 win in Bordeaux is a Champions Cup semi-final trip to Toulouse.

Quins delivered one of their greatest ever results by pipping heavy home favourites Bordeaux in Saturday’s quarter-final at Stade Chaban Delmas.

Maxime Lucu missed a conversion at the death to swipe the win, but Quins were huge value for a tables-turning result.

Now the men from The Stoop must face Toulouse in their home city for their first-ever Campions Cup last-four tie.

Toulouse thrashed Exeter Chiefs 64-26 in France on Sunday, flexing yet more muscle in their quest for an unprecedented sixth top-tier European crown.

Bordeaux had racked up 100 points in twice thrashing Saracens this term, while Quins had leaked 90 points in two hefty defeats to their London rivals.

All the odds were in Bordeaux’s favour then, only for Quins to take the game to their hosts in typically swashbuckling fashion.

Quins produced one of their greatest-ever results in France (Getty Images)
Quins produced one of their greatest-ever results in France (Getty Images)

Fit-again Will Porter claimed two smart scores, with Will Evans, Alex Dombrandt and Tyrone Green also crossing, to add to a penalty try.

Marcus Smith’s five conversions ultimately edged out Lucu’s four conversions and one penalty, with Bordeaux matching Quins’ six tries.

Having made form count for nothing once, Quins now see no reason not to repeat the feat when taking on Toulouse on Sunday, May 4.

“That’s the best game I’ve ever been involved in, to be honest,” said Porter, who made a timely injury return with Danny Care sidelined.

“We feel like we can do something special this season, and that result against Bordeaux just shows what we’re capable of.”

When Quins were thumped 52-7 by Sarries at Tottenham on March 23, the entire squad held candid meetings that might just have saved their season.

That eight-try drubbing proved the most inauspicious return to action after the league’s seven-week break – but Quins have since downed Bath, Glasgow and now Bordeaux in succession.

Rugby director Billy Millard explained how several blunt conversations have put Quins back on track, with his side still fully in the Premiership play-offs hunt.

“The great thing about this group, especially after a loss like Saracens, is that we were pretty honest with each other,” said Millard.

“We then had a pretty wild game against Bath and a really tough game against Glasgow, so we were pretty confident that the last three weeks would set us up.

“We knew it would go down to the wire. We didn’t turn up against Saracens, why, we are not sure, but we have done ever since, and the boys executed on Saturday.”