Wallaby secures draw for Ulster against Dragons

Fri, 01 Dec 2017 21:47
Large full time dragons v ulster.

PRO14 MATCH REPORT: Christian Lealiifano’s dramatic last-gasp try ensured Ulster left the Dragons with a share of the spoils in a pulsating 32-32 encounter at Rodney Parade.

The flyhalf touched down with the clock in the red to bring to an end the unlikely encounter which the hosts looked to have snatched right on the final whistle themselves through Ashton Hewitt.

Liam Belcher and Angus O’Brien also touched down in a three-try 11-minute period, adding to Matthew Screech’s score and Hewitt’s first of the night before the break.

But Ulster hung on and clawed their way back, with Craig Gilroy’s try double and Paul Marshall score in the first half putting them in the box seat, also adding to a penalty score.

Great Ulster handling got the visitors flying high within ten minutes as Gilroy dotted down the opener, blitzing down the right flank after some impressive work through the hands.

The Irish province continued to threaten but Dragons got the next score through a powerful drive which saw Screech rumble over as Henson converted to cut the deficit to 8-7.

Henson’s boot put his side again, this time via a penalty, and the advantage was extended after an unfortunate slip from Louis Ludik allowed Hewitt to pounce.

The half was to end level however and it was no less than either side deserved, with Ulster’s impressive rolling maul eventually leading to a penalty try and a 15-15 scoreline.

But that wasn’t to last long as Ulster broke forward immediately from kick-off, with Gilroy’s work and Marshall’s quick-thinking leading to the scrum half rumbling over with 42 minutes on the clock.

In the groove, Ulster were seeking a bonus point and duly got it 15 minutes into the second half, Gilroy again on the scoreboard for his second of what was fast becoming an entertaining match.

But Dragons were not to give up without a fight and got themselves back in the contest with Belcher the man to dot down.

The hooker made the most of some excellent work from the line-out, driving over to set up a grandstand finish with seven points the difference and 13 minutes remaining.

O’Brien then got in on the act, finishing off some lovely skill, and the hosts even got the lead with their fifth try of the evening as Hewitt flew over into the corner to send all parts of Rodney Parade into pandemonium.

But the final word was to come from the visitors, taking three hard-earned points as Lealiifano dotted down – though he wasn’t able to convert as the game ended in truly breathless scenes.

The scorers:

For Dragons:
Tries
: Screech, Hewitt 2, Belcher, O'Brien
Cons: Henson 2
Pen: Henson

For Ulster:
Tries;
Leali'ifano, Gilroy 2, Marshall, Penalty
Con: Leali'ifano
Pen: Leali'ifano

Yellow card: Dixon (Dragons, 4)

 

Dragons: 15 Angus O’Brien, 14 Ashton Hewitt, 13 Adam Warren, 12 Jack Dixon, 11 Jared Rosser, 10 Gavin Henson, 9 Dan Babos, 8 James Benjamin, 7 Ollie Griffiths (captain), 6 Aaron Wainwright, 5 Matthew Screech, 4 Joe Davies, 3 Lloyd Fairbrother, 2 Liam Belcher, 1 Brok Harris
Replacements: 16 Ellis Shipp, 17 Gerard Ellis, 18 Sam Hobbs, 19 Rynard Landman, 20 Ben Roach, 21 Charlie Davies, 22 Arwel Robson, 23 Pat Howard

 

Ulster: 15 Charles Piutau, 14 Craig Gilroy, 13 Tommy Bowe, 12 Stuart McCloskey, 11 Louis Ludik, 10 Christian Lealiifano, 9 Paul Marshall, 8 Nick Timoney, 7 Sean Reidy, 6 Greg Jones, 5 Kieran Treadwell, 4 Alan O'Connor, 3 Ross Kane, 2 John Andrew, 1 Schalk van der Merwe
Replacements: 16 Rory Best, 17 Callum Black, 18 Andrew Warwick, 19 Matthew Dalton, 20 Chris Henry, 21 John Cooney, 22 Peter Nelson, 23 Andrew Trimble

Referee: Nigel Owens (Wales)
Assistant referees: Lloyd Linton (Scotland), Keith Allen (Scotland)
TMO: Andrew Cymene (Scotland)

Source: @Pro14Official

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FIXTURE GMT VENUE
Fri, 15 December 2017
Ulster v Harlequins 19h45 Kingspan Stadium
Sat, 16 December 2017
Montpellier v Glasgow Warriors 13h00 Altrad Stadium
Treviso v Scarlets 13h00 Stadio Comunale di Monigo
Leinster v Exeter Chiefs 15h15 Aviva Stadium
Racing Metro v Castres 15h15 Stade Yves-du-Manoir
Bath v Toulon 17h30 Recreation Ground
Sun, 17 December 2017
Wasps v La Rochelle 13h00 Ricoh Arena
Clermont Auvergne v Saracens 15h15 Stade Marcel-Michelin
Ospreys v Northampton Saints 15h15 Liberty Stadium
Leicester Tigers v Munster 17h30 Welford Road
RESULT SCORE
Mon, 11 December 2017
Saracens v Clermont Auvergne 14 | 46
Sun, 10 December 2017
Exeter Chiefs v Leinster 8 | 18
Harlequins v Ulster 5 | 17
La Rochelle v Wasps 49 | 29
Sat, 09 December 2017
Munster v Leicester Tigers 33 | 10
Castres v Racing Metro 16 | 13
Northampton Saints v Ospreys 32 | 43
Toulon v Bath 24 | 20
Scarlets v Treviso 33 | 28
Fri, 08 December 2017
Glasgow Warriors v Montpellier 22 | 29
Sun, 03 December 2017
Harlequins v Saracens 20 | 19
Sat, 02 December 2017
Cheetahs v Scarlets 28 | 21
Munster v Ospreys 36 | 10
Wasps v Leicester Tigers 32 | 25
Treviso v Leinster 10 | 36
PRO14
MORE LOGS
Pool A
Team P W D L Pts
Glasgow Warriors 10 10 0 0 48
Munster 10 7 0 3 36
Cheetahs 10 6 0 4 29
Cardiff Blues 10 4 0 6 19
Connacht 10 3 0 7 18
Zebre 10 3 0 7 16
Ospreys 10 2 0 8 11
Pool B
Team P W D L Pts
Scarlets 10 8 0 2 40
Leinster 10 8 0 2 37
Ulster 10 7 1 2 35
Edinburgh 10 6 0 4 28
Treviso 10 3 0 7 15
Dragons 10 2 1 7 13
Kings 10 0 0 10 4