The Southern Kings have been given another lost after Edinburgh beat them 48-21. The Kings are yet to get a win in the PRO14 and Friday night has been another disappointment for them.
Southern Kings 21-48 Edinburgh
Richard Cockerill was able to welcome six members of the Scotland squad back into his squad for the long journey to South Africa, as the Kings looked to build on last week’s narrow Scarlets loss.
The South African heat might not be the ideal location for an Edinburgh side more at home with freezing nights and howling wind, but it took just three minutes to stamp their authority into the game. The first try quickly came when Fraser McKenzie was at the end of a number of passes to get the first points, Jaco van der Walt adding the two.
Bill Mata swiftly followed McKenzie’s opener, bullying his way down the right flank to find the line, in a destructive start by Edinburgh. The Kings’ woes continued as they lost captain Schalk Ferreira to the sin-bin, all this before the clock had even gone past 11 minutes. A penalty from van der Walt took the long distance visitors to a 15 point lead, before the Kings got their first three through Kurt Coleman.
Try three came on 19 minutes, Grant Gilchrist on hand to finish off a well worked move and batter his way through challenges. The hosts hit back however, as Harlon Klaasen hit the accelerator to break through the centre and narrow the deficit, Coleman making it 10-22.
Two more kicks from Coleman reduced the gap to just six points, but Edinburgh were on hand to strengthen it again after the break. Their fourth try arrived from Dougie Fife, who evaded three Kingsmen to secure the bonus point and restore the gap to a healthy 11. And that grew further when the TMO gave the thumbs up as Sam Hidalgo-Clyde managed to find the post and the line in one.
The match was rounded off with the sixth and seventh Edinburgh tries to add further gloss, Hidalgo-Clyne getting his second in five minute as he went around the back and charged over. And he completed his quickfire hat-trick right at the death, all three coming within a seven minute spell. A late try from Dries van Schalkwyk was something to celebrate for the Kings.
Tries: H Klaasen, Van Schalkwyk
Pens: Coleman 3
Yellow Cards: Ferreira, Penxe
Tries: McKenzie, Mata, Gilchrist, Fife, Hidalgo-Clyne 3
Cons: Van der Walt 2, Hidalgo-Clyne 3
Pen: Van der Walt
Yellow Card: Du Preez
Glasgow Warriors 40-16 Cardiff Blues
With internationals returning for both sides, it was Cardiff Blues who broke the deadlock inside two minutes as Jarrod Evans dispatched an early penalty through the sticks. And the Blues swiftly added a try for a double figures lead inside the first 10 minutes. Evans combined with Willis Halaholo, with the latter adding the pass to Macauley Cook who went over inside the corner, Evans adding two.
The Warriors battled back and would have narrowed the gap sooner had it not been for the resolute Blues defensive unit, who battled to defend the early lead. But it was cut by the hosts, when Sam Johnson bounced away from a challenge to run through the posts. Peter Horne added two, but Evans quickly fired back with a penalty restoring a 7-13 lead for the Blues.
The game turned on its head midway through the half, as Blues prop Taufa’ao Filise was shown a red card. Not many in the Scotstoun crowd knew why Nigel Owens opted for the sending off, and with an hour left to defend against an extra man, Cardiff’s early lead looked in peril. And it proved so, as Alex Dunbar quickly got Glasgow’s second of the night, Horne putting his side into the ascendancy.
Evans kicked his side back into the lead, Blues taking a 16-14 lead with half an hour remaining. The Welsh side were putting up an incredible fight, but it only got harder when Olly Robinson was shown yellow, the one man disadvantage becoming two. And Ruaridh Jackson swiftly made the extra-extra man pay for Warriors, Horne adding the two for the 21-16 lead.
Samu Vunisa made sure of the home win as the clock ran down with a fourth try, Cardiff’s fighting spirit eventually waning out to the extra Glasgow men. Leonardo Sarto extended the lead as he managed to just get a hand to the ball as he dived for the line, and another try at the death from Niko Matawalu sealed the 40-16 Glasgow win.
Tries: Johnson, Dunbar, Jackson, Vunisa, Sarto, Matawalu
Cons: Horne 5
For Cardiff Blues:
Pens: Evans 3
Yellow Card: Robinson
Red Card: Filise
Dragons 32-32 Ulster
An early yellow shown to Jack Dixon allowed Christian Lealiifano to kick Ulster ahead inside the opening minutes, before the first try followed for the visitors. Craig Gilroy sped down the wing to finish, following neat play in the build up by Louis Ludik and Charles Piutau.
Matthew Screech levelled the try scoring soon after for Dragons, the man at the heart of a drive that allowed Gavin Henson to narrow the gap to just a point, following that with a penalty as the 14 men of the Dragons impressed in the early minutes. Ludik, who had played a part in the Ulster try, was at fault for Dragons second. He slipped, allowing Ashton Hewitt to find the line over in the corner. Henson saw his conversion effort bounce back off the post, Dragons led at 15-8.
A penalty try for Ulster levelled as the half wore on, 15 all in a tightly contested opening 40 minutes. The restart saw Paul Marshall give Ulster the lead, as he went over within a couple of minutes of the sides reemerging.
The visitors were starting to dominate and Gilroy grabbed his second and the bonus point try, Lealiifano making no mistake with the kick as the lead grew to 27-15. Liam Belcher reduced that gap for the Dragons though with 10 left to play, the Welsh side keeping it in the balance. And Angus O’Brien added another try as Ulster’s lead disappeared, finishing off a break from Henson who levelled the scoring with a conversion.
It looked like the comeback was completed with a minute to go, Hewitt putting the Dragons five points clear after three tries in 10 minutes. But in overtime, Lealiifano found the line to make it 32 apiece. He failed to secure the win though as the conversion effort missed the sticks, the points shared in an enthralling 32-32 draw.
Tries: Screech, Hewitt 2, Belcher, O’Brien
Cons: Henson 2
Yellow Card: Dixon
Tries: Gilroy 2, P Marshall, Penalty try, Lealiifano