Five-try Glasgow down Ospreys
REPORT: Josh McKay scored his first Glasgow Warriors try as they earned a bonus point against the Ospreys with a dominant second-half display.
Sione Tuipulotu grabbed two tries and Cole Forbes also crossed as Warriors secured a 38-19 victory at Scotstoun to lift them above their visitors in the United Rugby Championship.
Dan Evans got the Ospreys’ only try late on, but Warriors co-captain Fraser Brown immediately marked his return from injury by going over.
The Ospreys started well and twice went ahead during an early exchange of penalties, but they were caught out in the 21st minute after Sam Johnson initially broke the line.
The Welsh side stopped Zander Fagerson and Jamie Bhatti almost on the line, but Glasgow worked the ball out for Forbes to go through Mat Protheroe’s tackle and over the line.
Tuipulotu soon got his first try of the evening after a Warriors scrum inside their own half. The Australia-born Scotland international collected the ball after some short, sharp passes and burst through two challenges before sprinting for home.
Four Gareth Anscombe penalties kept Glasgow’s half-time lead to five points, but the home side pinned the Ospreys back after the interval before McKay stepped inside his man and burst through to score in the 47th minute.
Warriors brought on Tonga international Walter Fifita for his debut and remained on top.
The bonus point was sealed just after the hour mark when Tuipulotu wriggled out of an Anscombe tackle and was soon clear and away from the chasing Ospreys.
The Ospreys finally made some attacking inroads in the second half. Matthew Aubrey charged down Ross Thompson’s kick, but Kyle Steyn caught him with a last-ditch tackle.
The visitors did get their score in the 70th minute when Evans went over after good footwork from Anscombe.
But Brown made his mark two minutes later in his first appearance since suffering a knee injury in October. The hooker took the ball from the back of a maul on the right flank and forced himself over.
Duncan Weir followed up Thompson’s perfect conversion record with an excellent kick to finish off the scoring.
Player of the match
Tuipulotu had strong competition from Rory Darge, but the centre’s two tries edged him ahead.
The new Scotland international showed his pace and power to supply two long-range finishes, in all gaining 99 metres throughout the game.
Play of the match
McKay took his try brilliantly by stepping inside two players, but he produced a stunning late kick which appeared to defy physics.
Picking the ball up just inside the touchline in his 22, the full-back somehow found an angle to kick into touch on the cusp of the opposite 22.
For Glasgow Warriors
Tries: Forbes, Tuipulotu 2, McKay, Brown
Cons: Thompson 4, Weir
Pens: Anscombe 4
Glasgow Warriors: 15 Josh McKay, 14 Kyle Steyn, 13 Sione Tuipulotu, 12 Sam Johnson, 11 Cole Forbes, 10 Ross Thompson, 9 Ali Price (captain), 8 Matt Fagerson, 7 Rory Darge, 6 Ryan Wilson, 5 Kiran McDonald, 4 Scott Cummings, 3 Zander Fagerson, 2 George Turner, 1 Jamie Bhatti.
Replacements: 16 Fraser Brown, 17 Oli Kebble, 18 Enrique Pieretto, 19 Lewis Bean, 20 Thomas Gordon 21 Jamie Dobie, 22 Duncan Weir, 23 Walter Fifita.
Ospreys: 15 Dan Evans, 14 Mat Protheroe, 13 Michael Collins, 12 Owen Watkin, 11 Luke Morgan, 10 Gareth Anscombe, 9 Reuben Morgan-Williams, 8 Morgan Morris, 7 Jac Morgan, 6 Will Griffiths, 5 Adam Beard (captain), 4 Rhys Davies, 3 Tomas Francis, 2 Elvis Taione, 1 Nicky Smith.
Replacements: 16 Dewi Lake, 17 Gareth Thomas, 18 Tom Botha, 19 Lloyd Ashley, 20 Sam Cross, 21 Matthew Aubrey, 22 Josh Thomas, 23 Joe Hawkins.
Referee: Chris Busby
Assistant referees: Ben Blain & Graeme Ormiston
TMO: Sam Grove-White