Allen brace fires Blues past Pau
REPORT: Cardiff Blues retook top-spot in European Challenge Cup Pool Four, but failed to bag a bonus-point in a convincing 27-12 triumph over Pau.
Bath had moved to the summit with their derby triumph over Bristol, but a brace of tries from Cory Allen and Blaine Scully's early score maintained the Blues' 100 percent start.
Steve Shingler booted 12 points to keep Pau at arm's length after Daniel Ramsay's score, but they could not break through for the crucial bonus-point try.
Instead, Bastien Pourailly crossed for a consolation at the death.
The Blues got off to a red-hot start after four minutes. Shingler delivered a perfectly timed pass to Allen in midfield and the Wales centre sliced through the defence. He found Dan Fish in support, who drew the covering defence to send Scully crashing over at the corner.
The wing still had plenty to do but made it look easy. Shingler converted from out-wide before he landed a penalty from in front of the posts to give the hosts a 10-0 lead.
But the resilient French side came fighting back through their skipper Ramsay, who crashed over from close range to cut the gap to five points.
But Shingler maintained his 100 percent record with the boot to notch a second penalty, before the Blues held firm in defence to keep their 13-5 advantage intact at half-time.
Danny Wilson's men started the second period as they began the first - with a try. Shingler was at the heart of it again as he delayed a pass for Allen to run in unopposed from five metres out. He landed the conversion once again to make it 20-5, and it did not take long for the third try to come.
And it was that man Allen again. The ball was worked wide from a close range scrum, and the Wales centre fended off the covering defence to score. Shingler made it four successful kicks from four, but the Welsh region could not find a vital bonus-point try.
Instead it was Pau who finished the match in fine fashion as Pourailly crossed at the death.
For Cardiff Blues:
Tries: Scully, Allen 2
Cons: Shingler 3
Pens: Shingler 2
Tries: Ramsay, Pourailly
Yellow card: Jarrad Hoeata (Cardiff Blues, 77)
Cardiff Blues: 15 Dan Fish, 14 Alex Cuthbert, 13 Cory Allen, 12 Garyn Smith, 11 Blaine Scully, 10 Steven Shingler, 9 Lloyd Williams, 8 Josh Turnbull, 7 Ellis Jenkins, 6 Macauley Cook, 5 James Down, 4 Jarrad Hoeata, 3 Taufa'ao Filise, 2 Kirby Myhill, 1 Gethin Jenkins.
Replacements: 16 Matthew Rees, 17 Rhys Gill, 18 Scott Andrews, 19 Seb Davies, 20 Kristian Dacey, 21 Tomos Williams, 22 Jarrod Evans, 23 Matthew Morgan.
Pau: 15 Charly Malie, 14 Louis Dupichot, 13 Santiago Fernandez, 12 Pierre Dupouy, 11 Bastien Pourailly, 10 Brandon Fajardo, 9 Thibault Daubagna, 8 Ben Mowen, 7 Sean Dougall, 6 Pierrick Gunther, 5 Daniel Ramsay, 4 Masalosalo Tutaia, 3 Sylvain Charlet, 2 Quentin Lespiaucq Brettes, 1 Jérémy Hurou.
Replacements: 16 Lucas Rey, 17 Geoffrey Moise, 18 Joel Sclavi, 19 Fabrice Metz, 20 Giovanni Habel Kuffner, 21 Thierry Lacrampe, 22 Romain Buros, 23 Marvin Lestremeau.
Referee: JP Doyle (England)
Assistant referees: Wayne Barnes (England), Gareth Copsey (England)