|Wasps (25) 41|
|Tries: de Jongh (2), Bassett, Hughes Cons: Sopoaga 3 Pens: Sopoaga 3, Daly|
|Leicester (18) 35|
|Tries: May 2, Veainu, Kalamafoni Cons: Ford 3 Pens: Ford 3|
Wasps resisted a courageous second-half display by 14-man Leicester Tigers to earn a narrow victory in a captivating eight-try game at the Ricoh Arena.
Scores by Juan de Jongh and Josh Bassett saw Wasps race 14-0 ahead.
Tigers hit back to trail 25-18, but the controversial dismissal of Will Spencer for a dangerous tackle turned the game heavily in Wasps’ favour by the break.
Johnny May’s second try helped put Tigers ahead but three Lima Sopoaga kicks sealed victory for the hosts.
Sopoaga’s reliability with the boot ultimately proved the difference as the sides each picked up a bonus point for registering four tries in a thrilling, open, contest enriched by some dubious defending.
But Spencer’s red card, so soon after the Tigers got back to within seven points of their hosts, was a telling moment.
The Leicester second-rower was adjudged to have gone high into a challenge on Wasps hooker Tommy Taylor, and made contact with the head with his shoulder.
De Jongh had gone over for the opening score after Dan Robson took advantage of a fortunate break to run deep from his own half and Bassett collected Elliot Daly’s fine kick to score in the corner.
Nathan Hughes bundled over after a Gareth Owen knock-on for a third home score in between George Ford setting up tries for May, with an astute kick, and Telusa Veainu.
The Tigers pack started to rattle Wasps after the interval resulting in Sione Kalamafoni’s close-range effort.
And, after a dazzling de Jongh try, another May and Ford combination saw the England wing grab his second try to put Tigers ahead at 35-32.
However, Sopoaga kept his nerve from three consecutive kicks against a jaded visiting side, to close out a second win in three matches for Wasps.
Wasps: Daly; Wade, De Jongh, Le Bourgeois, Bassett; Sopoaga, Robson; Harris, Taylor, Brookes, Launchbury (capt), Gaskell, Johnson, Carr, Hughes.
Replacements: Cruse, Zhvania, Stuart, Rowlands, Morris, Simpson, Searle, Miller.
Leicester: Veainu; Thompstone, Tuilagi, Owen, May; Ford, B Youngs; Bateman, T Youngs (capt), Cole, Williams, Spencer, Denton, Thompson, Kalamafoni.
Replacements: Stevens, Feao, Heyes, Wells, Lewis, White, Hardwick, Olowofela.
Referee: Ian Tempest.