Glasgow too good for Zebre
MATCH REPORT: Glasgow Warriors survived an early period of Zebre Parma pressure to emerge with a 45-17 bonus-point victory from their match in Italy.
Warriors were without an away win since January but claimed an ultimately comfortable victory in the Parma rain.
Sintu Manjezi cancelled out Pierre Bruno’s opening try as Glasgow went into half-time with a 10-7 lead, before Sebastian Cancelliere, Stafford McDowall, Johnny Matthews (2) and Domingo Miotti all crossed after the interval.
Two tries from Jacques du Toit were all Zebre could muster in response in the second period, with George Horne turning in an outstanding performance with the boot by kicking 15 points for his side.
Matt Fagerson was yellow-carded as Glasgow came under intense early pressure on their own line, before brother Zander was forced off through injury soon after.
A Chris Cook try was ruled out for obstruction, but the pressure eventually told when Geronimo Prisciantelli’s cross-field kick found Bruno wide on the right to touch down.
Prisciantelli added the extras, but Glasgow were almost immediately level.
Having spent most of the match inside their own 22, Manjezi gathered his own charge down to go over, with Horne splitting the posts with the conversion.
Prisciantelli missed an opportunity to nudge Zebre back in front from the tee on the half-hour mark, and it was Glasgow who had the advantage at the break thanks to Horne’s penalty.
The visitors then took complete control of the encounter early in the second period, with Cancelliere being sent over in the left corner before McDowall picked up a loose ball to dart for the line.
Horne converted both and was on target again when Johnny Matthews crashed over with 12 minutes left to play to bag the bonus point.
Du Toit scored his two tries either side of Miotti’s first in Glasgow colours, but they mattered little in the end as Matthews doubled his own tally and Horne maintained his perfect record from the tee to give the scoreline a convincing gloss and stretch Warriors’ domination of this fixture with a 20th win in 20 meetings.
Player of the Match
Horne was excellent for Glasgow and his consistent kicking helped pull Glasgow clear after a difficult start.
Play of the match
Warriors had offered little in attack until Manjezi popped up with a charge down that seeemed to turn the tide.
Manjezi finished off the try which seemed to lift Glasgow heading into the second half.
Tries: Bruno, Du Toit
For Glasgow Warriors:
Tries: Manjezi, Cancellierre, McDowall, Matthews 2, Miotti.
Cons: Horne 6
Zebre: 15 Lorenzo Pani, 14 Pierre Bruno, 13 Erich Cronjé, 12 Enrico Lucchin, 11 Simone Gesi, 10 Geronimo Prisciantelli, 9 Chris Cook, 8 Matt Kvesic, 7 MJ Pelser, 6 Taina Fox-Matamua, 5 Andrea Zambonin, 4 David Sisi (captain), 3 Matteo Nocera, 2 Marco Manfredi, 1 Luca Rizzoli.
Replacements: 16 Jacques Du Toit, 17 Daniele Rimpelli, 18 Ion Neculai, 19 Jan Uys, 20 Giacomo Ferrari, 21 Gonzalo Garcia, 22 Franco Smith Jr, 23 Kobus Van Wyk.
Glasgow: 15 Ollie Smith, 14 Sebastian Cancelliere, 13 Sione Tuipulotu, 12 Stafford McDowall, 11 Kyle Steyn (captain), 10 Tom Jordan, 9 George Horne, 8 Matt Fagerson, 7 Sione Vailanu, 6 Ryan Wilson, 5 Richie Gray, 4 Sintu Manjezi, 3 Zander Fagerson, 2 Fraser Brown, 1 Oliver Kebble.
Replacements: 16 Johnny Matthews, 17 Jamie Bhatti, 18 Murphy Walker, 19 Jean-Pierre du Preez, 20 Lewis Bean, 21 Gregor Brown, 22 Jamie Dobie, 23 Domingo Miotti.
Referee: Tual Trainini (France)
Assistant referees: Franco Rosella (Italy), Gabriel Chirnoaga (Italy)
TMO: Eric Briquet-Campin (France)