Match ends, Stoke City 3, Queens Park Rangers 1.
- Walters scores hat-trick on 200th Stoke appearance
- QPR now lost all 11 away games in league
- Stoke's Asmir Begovic makes three crucial saves
- QPR remain in relegation zone
Jonathan Walters struck a hat-trick for Stoke as QPR lost their 11th straight away game in the Premier League.
Walters gave the hosts the lead by punishing poor defending, curling a right-foot shot into the bottom corner.
And he doubled his side's advantage with a neat finish after exchanging passes with Stephen Ireland.
Niko Kranjcar pulled a goal back for QPR and Asmir Begovic superbly tipped Joey Barton's free-kick on to the crossbar, before Walters's late header.
The save from Barton was one of three crucial interventions from Begovic in the second period as the visitors pressed for an equaliser.
But defeat means Rangers have now lost every game they have played away from Loftus Road this season, the worst start to a top-flight campaign since Liverpool in 1953-54.
|Walters is the first Premier League player to score a perfect hat-trick (left foot, right foot, header) since Kevin Nolan and Romelu Lukaku on 19 May 2013|
Harry Redknapp's side have now conceded a league-high 42 goals in 23 games and only Leicester are beneath them in the table.
In contrast, former QPR boss Mark Hughes' Potters look in confident form - just two defeats in their past 11 games taking them up to ninth.
The atmosphere at the Britannia Stadium was sombre as Stoke celebrated the life of club legend Sir Stanley Matthews, who would have turned 100 on Sunday.
On the pitch, it was a quiet opening, with neither side able to create any clear-cut opportunities, not helped by the typically blustery conditions.
But the game burst into life on 21 minutes. As QPR attempted to play their way out of trouble, Ireland's backheel sent Walters through, and he calmly netted the opener.
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|Stoke's Huth having Leicester medical|
Victor Moses - a threat throughout with his pace and trickery - then curled a 25-yard free-kick narrowly wide for the hosts.
And they soon scored a second as Ireland and Walters combined again, with the latter converting with a low left-footed finish.
Kranjcar reduced the arrears by slotting into an open net after Charlie Austin's deflected effort fell into his path.
As they pushed for an equaliser, Eduardo Vargas's spectacular scissor kick was pushed away by Begovic.
The Bosnian goalkeeper then diverted Barton's rasping free-kick onto the bar and was at full stretch to keep out Leroy Fer's long-range strike.
The equaliser did not come, and Walters thumped home a powerful header in injury time to wrap up the victory.
Stoke manager Mark Hughes:
"We allowed them back in because at 2-0 up we were comfortable. With the wind and the conditions they had a real go in the second half.
"Jon Walters was the star man and is a key player for us. He gives everything in every game and is a credit to his profession. It was his 200th game today and to get a hat-trick it is special for him.
"We have good ability in the wide areas and key areas in the field, but it wasn't a great game and not of a great quality."
QPR manager Harry Redknapp:
"People look and the score is 3-1, and say it was convincing - how we got beaten I don't know.
"We started well, and suddenly we lose the ball under no pressure and find ourselves 2-0 down, we certainly didn't deserve to be.
"We just batter them in the second half, but just couldn't score. All three goals conceded were individual errors. Credit to Walters but he won't get an easier hat-trick. We can't keep making individual errors like that."
- 17ShawcrossSubstituted forMuniesaat 42'minutes
- 10ArnautovicSubstituted forCrouchat 63'minutes
- 7IrelandSubstituted forAdamat 72'minutes
- 13MosesBooked at 58mins
- 19WaltersBooked at 85mins
- 14IslaBooked at 24mins
- 6HillSubstituted forYunat 75'minutes
- 20HenrySubstituted forZamoraat 45'minutes
- 8BartonBooked at 68mins
- 19KranjcarSubstituted forHoilettat 68'minutes
- Mike Dean
- Shots on Target
Second Half ends, Stoke City 3, Queens Park Rangers 1.
Goal! Stoke City 3, Queens Park Rangers 1. Jonathan Walters (Stoke City) header from the centre of the box to the bottom left corner following a set piece situation.
Phil Bardsley (Stoke City) wins a free kick in the attacking half.
Foul by Junior Hoilett (Queens Park Rangers).
Peter Crouch (Stoke City) wins a free kick in the attacking half.
Foul by Joey Barton (Queens Park Rangers).
Corner, Queens Park Rangers. Conceded by Marc Muniesa.
Corner, Queens Park Rangers. Conceded by Asmir Begovic.
Attempt saved. Leroy Fer (Queens Park Rangers) right footed shot from outside the box is saved in the bottom right corner.
Jonathan Walters (Stoke City) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.
Foul by Jonathan Walters (Stoke City).
Junior Hoilett (Queens Park Rangers) wins a free kick in the attacking half.
Attempt missed. Junior Hoilett (Queens Park Rangers) left footed shot from outside the box misses to the left. Assisted by Joey Barton.
Offside, Stoke City. Glenn Whelan tries a through ball, but Jonathan Walters is caught offside.
Attempt missed. Richard Dunne (Queens Park Rangers) header from the centre of the box misses to the left. Assisted by Mauricio Isla with a cross following a set piece situation.
Foul by Charlie Adam (Stoke City).
Joey Barton (Queens Park Rangers) wins a free kick on the right wing.
Attempt blocked. Bobby Zamora (Queens Park Rangers) right footed shot from the left side of the box is blocked.
Corner, Queens Park Rangers. Conceded by Marc Muniesa.