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Leinster batter listless Blues

Sat, 27 Oct 2012 20:13
Jamieheaslipleinster Danbiggarospreys
All Saturday's Pro12 action
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Leinster served up a 59-22 bonus point win over the Cardiff Blues at the RDS on Saturday, as Treviso toppled the Glasgow Warriors.

The Blues were all at sea as Leinster ruthlessly took them apart in the first half, racking up the quickest bonus point of this season's Pro12 after just 26 minutes.

Richardt Strauss, Ian Madigan, Jamie Heaslip and David Kearney all touched down to seal the province's five-point return, and Heaslip and Cian Healy added two more tries before the break.

40-3 adrift at half-time, Cardiff were abject at best and their Wales stars were anonymous until Alex Cuthbert, Leigh Halfpenny and Tom James finished off second half tries.

But the hosts managed to add three more to their tally, with Jordi Murphy and Damian Browne both touching down for the first time in Leinster colours and Fionn Carr added the ninth in the final minute.

The only negative on the night from a Leinster and Ireland point of view was the ankle injury which forced Brian O'Driscoll off midway through the first half.

The returning David Kearney made an impact within three minutes, exposing some sloppy defending from the Blues as he blazed through midfield.

Gordon D'Arcy kept the move going and good footwork allowed Strauss to burrow over on the right, scoring a try to celebrate his first call-up to the Ireland squad earlier this week.

Sexton converted and Leinster were in no mood to sit on their early lead with O'Driscoll evading his Lions team mate Jamie Roberts in the build-up to their second try.

Fergus McFadden cut in smartly off his wing and passed for supporting fullback Madigan to finish off to the left of the posts. Sexton converted for 14-0.

Cardiff clawed back three points through the boot of Halfpenny and Tom James threatened soon after as the action quickly swung from end to end.

Leinster continued to look explosive in attack against a sluggish Cardiff defence. O'Driscoll was involved twice, getting the better of Roberts and Josh Navidi, before passing for Kevin McLaughlin to put Heaslip over on the left.

O'Driscoll damaged his left ankle during the move and received treatment while Sexton converted. Brendan Macken was sent on to replace the Ireland captain, who was thankfully able to walk off the pitch unaided.

Leinster were unrelenting as Murphy and D'Arcy bulldozed through the attempted tackles and Sexton swung a long pass out for Kearney to slip in along the right touchline for the bonus point score.

Sexton maintained his 100% kicking record by adding the extras and with Cardiff losing prop Scott Andrews to the sin-bin, the visitors were soon standing behind their posts again.

From a close-in scrum, Leinster piled on the pressure and No.8 Heaslip plunged over off the base for his second try. Sexton's successful kick extended the margin to 32 points.

Prop Healy, making yards with every carry, then stretched past two defenders to claim Leinster's sixth try with Sexton suffering his first miss.

The nightmare continued for Cardiff just 90 seconds into the second period as man of the match Murphy, supported by replacement Browne, drove over for his try.

Sexton landed a superb conversion from the left before the Blues belatedly mounted a response, Cuthbert cutting through out wide for an unconverted effort.

Leinster rumbled forward ominously from the restart and a deft pass from Madigan released Browne for a simple run-in despite Navidi's last-ditch challenge.

Sexton supplied the extras for 54-8 and Cardiff roused themselves for a late bonus point push. Firstly, Jason Tovey looped a pass out for Halfpenny to touch down and convert.

Halfpenny added another seven-pointer with 11 minutes remaining, after Tom Williams' kick forward bounced favourably for James to score again on the left.

Normal service was resumed late on though as Sexton dangled a kick over to the left where replacement Carr gathered, shipped a tackle and stretched over from a metre out.

The scorers:

For Leinster:
Tries:
Strauss, Madigan, Heaslip 2, Kearney, Healy, Murphy, Browne, Carr
Cons: Sexton 7

For Cardiff Blues:
Tries:
Cuthbert, Halfpenny, James
Cons: Halfpenny 2
Pens: Halfpenny
Yellow card: Andrews

Leinster: 15 Ian Madigan, 14 David Kearney, 13 Brian O'Driscoll, 12 Gordon D'Arcy, 11 Fergus McFadden, 10 Jonathan Sexton, 9 Eoin Reddan, 8 Jamie Heaslip, 7 Jordi Murphy, 6 Kevin McLaughlin, 5 Devin Toner, 4 Leo Cullen (captain), 3 Mike Ross, 2 Richardt Strauss, 1 Cian Healy.
Replacements: 16 Sean Cronin, 17 Heinke van der Merwe, 18 Jamie Hagan, 19 Damian Browne, 20 Rhys Ruddock, 21 Isaac Boss, 22 Brendan Macken, 23 Fionn Carr.

Cardiff Blues: 15 Leigh Halfpenny, 14 Alex Cuthbert, 13 Dafydd Hewitt, 12 Jamie Roberts, 11 Tom James, 10 Jason Tovey, 9 Lloyd Williams, 8 Andries Pretorius (captain), 7 Sam Warburton, 6 Josh Navidi, 5 James Down, 4 Bradley Davies, 3 Scott Andrews, 2 Marc Breeze, 1 Tafa'ao Filise.
Replacements: 16 Rhys Willimas, 17 Nathan Trevett, 18 Campese Ma'afu, 19 Lou Reed, 20 Robin Copeland, 21 Lewis Jones, 22 Ceri Sweeney, 23 Tom Williams.

Venue: Royal Dublin Society
Referee: Ian Davies (Wales)
Assistant referees: David Wilkinson (Ireland), Olly Hodges (Ireland)
TMO: Brian Macneice (Ireland)

Ospreys 26-9 Connacht

Kahn Fotuali'i's try eight minutes from time sealed a perfect response to European disappointment for the Ospreys as they beat Connacht 26-9.

Having fallen to a bonus-point defeat to Leicester a week ago at Welford Road, the Ospreys needed a reaction in the Pro12, and that's exactly what they got at the Liberty Stadium.

Against a Connacht side who were determined not to simply make up the numbers the Welsh side were largely kept at bay in the first half.

However after first-half scores from Eli Walker and Justin Tipuric had helped them to a 12-6 half-time lead, they took control in the second half.

Jonathan Thomas' try immediately after the break helped the Ospreys move decisively clear and then, as they looked like they might miss out on the maximum points, Fotuali'i went over for the fourth try.

It took a quarter of an hour for the Ospreys to make the initial breakthrough, Walker getting on the end of some good patient build-up play before taking the scoring pass from Richard Fussell. Dan Biggar converted to stretch the lead to 7-0.

Connacht were determined to put pressure on their hosts though and two penalties from Dan Parks brought them back to within a single point five minutes before the break.

But the hosts scored again with Fussell playing a key role, stepping out of a couple of tackles, and sending Tipuric away out wide where the Welsh international finished in style.

The home side were in the ascendancy and added a third try straight after the break when Thomas reacted well to intercept a Parks pass and sprint over.

That appeared to take the wind out of Connacht sails but Parks added a third penalty to reduce the deficit to 19-9 after 52 minutes.

Biggar and Parks then both missed shots at goal as neither side was able to take control.

However with eight minutes remaining Fotuali'i spotted a gap in the Connacht defence off the back of a scrum and darted over to seal the maximum points for the home side.

It marked a fourth straight Pro12 success for the Ospreys, with Connacht in contrast having now lost their last two in the league.

The scorers:

For Ospreys:
Tries:
Walker, Tipuric, Thomas, Fotuali'i
Cons: Biggar 3

For Connacht:
Pens:
Parks 3

Ospreys: 15 Richard Fussell, 14 Hanno Dirksen, 13 Andrew Bishop, 12 Ashley Beck, 11 Eli Walker, 10 Dan Biggar, 9 Kahn Fotuali'i, 8 Jonathan Thomas, 7 Justin Tipuric, 6 Joe Bearman, 5 Ian Evans, 4 Alun Wyn Jones (captain), 3 Aaron Jarvis, 2 Richard Hibbard, 1 Ryan Bevington.
Replacements: 16 Matthew Dwyer, 17 Duncan Jones, 18 Joe Rees, 19 James King, 20 George Stowers, 21 Rhys Webb, 22 Matthew Morgan, 23 Tom Isaacs.

Connacht: 15 Darragh Leader, 14 Tiernan O'Halloran, 13 Robbie Henshaw, 12 Mata Fifita, 11 Fetu'u Vainikolo, 10 Dan Parks, 9 Kieran Marmion, 8 Eoin McKeon, 7 Willie Faloon, 6 John Muldoon, 5 George Naoupu, 4 Michael Swift, 3 Nathan White (captain), 2 Jason Harris-Wright, 1 Brett Wilkinson.
Replacements: 16 Adrian Flavin, 17 Ronan Loughney, 18 Rodney Ah You, 19 Dave Gannon, 20 Johnny O'Connor, 21 Dave Moore, 22 Miah Nikora, 23 Danie Poolman.

Venue: Liberty Stadium
Referee: George Clancy (Ireland)
Assistant referees: Neil Hennessy (Wales), Simon Rees (Wales)
TMO: Nigel Whitehouse (Wales)

Treviso 24-13 Glasgow Warriors

Tommy Seymour celebrated his call-up to the Scottish national squad with two tries as Glasgow Warriors ran out 24-13 winners over Treviso 24-13 at a rain-sodden Stadio di Monigo.

The 24-year-old struck twice in the second half to earn Glasgow a fifth consecutive victory in the Pro12, but the Warriors had to dig deep in a tight game after trailing 13-12 with 16 minutes remaining.

The game got underway following a minute's silence in memory of former Treviso player Piero Dotto, who died on Thursday.
Ruaridh Jackson missed an early penalty as heavy rain made handling difficult for both sides, but it wasn't long before the Warriors' flyhalf notched his first points of the evening.

Penalties on 12 and 15 minutes put Glasgow into a 6-0 lead, but that was wiped out when Treviso kicked a penalty to touch and from the resulting line-out No.8 Manoa Vosawai was driven over the line for the first try of the night.

Kris Burton added the extras to make it 7-6 to Treviso and a subsequent penalty after Glasgow were penalised at the scrum sent the home side in at the break with a four-point advantage.

Gregor Townsend's men were sharper after the restart with Jackson reducing the deficit with a penalty on 44 minutes. Scott Wright replaced Jackson shortly after and a 56th-minute penalty put Glasgow back in front.

The momentum seemed to be with Glasgow but a yellow card for replacement Tim Swinson for pulling down a drive gave Tobias Botes a shot at goal and he didn't waste it to give Treviso a one-point advantage.

But from a scrum deep in the Italian's 22, the scrumhalf's pass into midfield failed to find a player and Seymour gleefully nipped in to prod the ball over the line and dive on it, with the try awarded by the TMO after it appeared to cross the dead-ball line.

Wright added the extras to make it 19-13 with 14 minutes remaining and then with Glasgow attacking produced a peach of a cross-field kick that Treviso failed to deal with, allowing Seymour to score his second of the night unopposed from close range with the officials missing an apparent knock-on in the build-up.

Although Wright missed the conversion, Swinson returned from the sin-bin to bolster the Glasgow defence and despite another yellow card late on for Ofa Fainga'anuku they held on for victory to ensure they stay third in the Pro12 table.

The scorers:

For Treviso:
Try:
Vosawai
Con: Burton
Pens: Burton, Botes

For Glasgow:
Try:
Seymour 2
Con: Wight
Pens: Jackson 3, Wight
Yellow cards: Glasgow - Swinson (62 min), Fainga'anuku (76 mins)

Treviso: 15 Luke McLean, 14 Christian Loamanu, 13 Tommaso Benvenuti, 12 Alberto Sgarbi, 11 Tommaso Iannone, 10 Kristopher Burton, 9 Tobias Botes, 8 Manoa Vosawai, 7 Alessandro Zanni, 6 Simone Favaro, 5 Corniel Van Zyl (captain), 4 Francesco Minto, 3 Pedro Di Santo, 2 Franco Sbaraglini, 1 Ignacio Fernandez-Rouyet.
Replacements: 16 Leonardo Ghiraldini, 17 Michele Rizzo, 18 Lorenzo Cittadini, 19 Antonio Pavanello, 20 Valerio Bernabò, 21 Marco Filippucci, 22 Fabio Semenzato, 23 Brendan Williams,

Glasgow Warriors: 15 Peter Murchie, 14 Tommy Seymour, 13 Stuart Hogg, 12 Alex Dunbar, 11 Niko Matawalu, 10 Ruaridh Jackson, 9 Henry Pyrgos, 8 Ryan Wilson, 7 John Barclay, 6 Rob Harley, 5 Al Kellock (captain), 4 Tom Ryder, 3 Mike Cusack, 2 Finlay Gillies, 1 Ryan Grant.
Replacements: 16 Dougie Hall, 17 Ofa Fainga'anuku, 18 Gordon Reid, 19 Tim Swinson, 20 James Eddie, 21 Scott Wight, 22 Troy Nathan, 23 Taylor Paris.

Referee: Leo Colgan (Ireland)
Assistant Referees: Alan Falzone, Stefano Traversi (both Italy)
TMO: Carlo Damasco (Italy)

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