Heineken Cup: Edinburgh 34-11 London Irish

Edinburgh (20) 34

  • Tries: Visser, Thompson, Talei, Jones
  • Cons: Laidlaw 4
  • Pens: Laidlaw 2

London Irish (6) 11

  • Try: Joseph
  • Pens: Jarvis 2
Edinburgh's Geoff Cross retains possession for Edinburgh

Edinburgh's Geoff Cross breaks free as the hosts press forward

Edinburgh qualified for the quarter-finals of the Heineken Cup for the first time in eight years after beating London Irish to win Pool Two.

Tim Visser and Jim Thompson ran in tries as the hosts built up a 20-6 half-time lead.

The visitors pressed hard in the second half and were rewarded when Jonathan Joseph touched down.

But Netani Talei and Lee Jones went over as Edinburgh claimed a bonus point and set up a home tie with Toulouse.

The Scottish side bettered Cardiff Blues' 36-30 home win against Racing Metro 92 but the Welsh outfit qualify as one of two best runners-up.

Edinburgh stated their intent early on and Greig Laidlaw's speculative chip was chased by Matt Scott only for the inside centre to be beaten in the race to the line.

QUARTER-FINAL LINE-UP

  • Munster v Ulster
  • Leinster v Blues
  • Edinburgh v Toulouse
  • Saracens v Clermont Auvergne
  • Matches to be played 6/7/8 April

London Irish ventured forward and won a penalty from which Adrian Jarvis opened the scoring.

But the home side moved into the lead when Laidlaw gathered at the breakdown and slotted a kick between two defenders, with the pacy Visser bursting through to cross the line out on the right.

Laidlaw converted and added a penalty before Jarvis successfully kicked his second penalty for Irish.

Another Laidlaw penalty was soon followed by Thompson's try, the full-back receiving Laidlaw's pass on the right and racing over. Laidlaw converted once again.

Irish showed greater urgency after the restart but Edinburgh's defence was strong and Delon Armitage was twice frustrated as he tried to force his way over.

At the other end, Roddy Grant offloaded to Scott, who in turn sent Visser away on the right to touch down but the referee called play back after adjudging Grant's pass forward.

Lee Jones scores a try for Edinburgh

Jones's try gave Edinburgh their crucial bonus point

The visitors claimed their solitary try when Ross Samson's quickly taken free-kick allowed substitute Joseph to race down the flank and exchange passes with Adam Thompstone before powering past two defenders for the score. Jarvis's conversion attempt was wide.

Edinburgh responded positively as Talei crashed over and Laidlaw added the extras.

Michael Bradley's side then set off in pursuit of the crucial bonus point and were rewarded when Jones raced down the right flank to go over and Laidlaw maintained his 100% record with the boot.

The joy that greeted full-time in the home crowd at Murrayfield was enhanced by the news of Cardiff's failure to secure a bonus point as Edinburgh avoided an away tie with Leinster and instead secured a visit by four-time Heineken Cup champions Toulouse.

Edinburgh: Thompson, Jones, Houston, Scott, Visser, Laidlaw, M. Blair, Jacobsen, Ford, Cross, Gilchrist, Cox, McInally, Grant, Talei.

Replacements: Gilding for Cross (73), Lozada for Gilchrist (73). Not Used: Walker, Traynor, Godman, T. Brown, Hunter, Rennie.

London Irish: D. Armitage, Ojo, Spratt, Hape, Thompstone, Jarvis, Hodgson, Corbisiero, Buckland, Halavatau, Sandford, Casey, Garvey, Sisi, Gray.

Replacements: Shingler for Ojo (58), Joseph for Spratt (58), Samson for Hodgson (52), Lahiff for Corbisiero (52), Blaney for Buckland (38), Rautenbach for Halavatau (47), Kennedy for Sandford (52). Not Used: Evans.

Att: 10,892

Ref: Peter Fitzgibbon (Ireland).