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O'Shea hails 'world class' Evans

Nick Evans was hailed as a "genuine world class player" after his 22-point haul guided Harlequins into the Amlin Challenge Cup semi-finals with a victory over Wasps.

The New Zealand fly-half scored 22 points from five penalties, two conversions and a sweet drop-goal as Harlequins held a spirited Wasps side at arm's length to win 32-22.

Harlequins boss Conor O'Shea said "I would pay to watch Nick Evans train. Nick Evans is genuinely a world class player. We are very fortunate to have him here."

Evans' imperious performance added further weight to the argument that New Zealand need him as back-up to Dan Carter at the Rugby World Cup later this year.

But O'Shea would be surprised if the All Blacks broke their own policy of not selecting overseas-based players, and said: "We have a saying in Ireland 'you can't be half pregnant'. If you make an exception to the policy of not picking overseas players then the great players will think they can go.

"If Nick is called up, we are happy to have Rory Clegg. As of now I don't think he'll be going but it is up to (All Blacks coach) Graham Henry."

Quins will play either Munster or Brive in the semi-finals of a competition they won in 2001 and 2004.

"We are very happy to be in the semi-final of a tough competition," O'Shea added.

"You want to play at Thomand Park or in the south of France in the semi-finals of a massive competition. It is the place you want to be.

"We are glad to be the representatives from England in the semi-finals of this competition."


From Belfast Telegraph