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Will the real Quins show up?

Recently Bordeaux Bègles put 100 points past Saracens in the Investec European Challenge Cup, whilst Sarries put 51 points past Quins;  so what chances if any did Quins have at the Chanan Delmas stadium in Bordeaux yesterday?

As it happened, quite a lot – as in a thriller – they ran six tries past the leading French outfit.

All this was achieved without Joe Marler and Danny Care, though their replacements Fin Baxter and Will Porter, played very well indeed.

Porter scored two tries and Baxter out-scrummaged the 25 stone monster Ben Tameifena.

My wife had a visitor from Paris, an Ivorian girl who was once our au pair but became adopted family.

I told my missus I am not missing the game though we had agreed to watch the Grand National.

As sometimes happens in life it all worked out better than anticipated.

Our friend Élodie was captivated by the rugby, though living in Paris her allegiances were uncertain.

She picked up that after going 0-14 down the French side were coming back strong and I – like all Quins supporters – feared a second half collapse as has happened in recent times.

However, this was the best Quins performance since the semi-final against Bristol Bears in 2021.

They held strong though Maxine Lucu should have converted to give Bordeaux Bègles a narrow win.

Now Quins face the winner of Toulouse v Exeter in the semi-final – our first appearance at this stage.

At half time we watched the Grand National but – of my missus’s two picks – Mahler Mission fell and Limerick Lave finished eighth.

The good thing is that when we switched back to the second half we had missed nothing.

The sports pages of The Rust have debated entertaining v winning. Yesterday – and extraordinarily – Quins managed both.