Andrew Trimble grabs two tries as Ulster claim bonus point

Home side take advantage of sin-binning to put Edinburgh to the sword

Ulster winger  Andrew Trimble dives over for one of his tries in the Guinness Pro12 game at Ravenhill. Photograph: Darren Kidd/Inpho/Presseye

Ulster winger Andrew Trimble dives over for one of his tries in the Guinness Pro12 game at Ravenhill. Photograph: Darren Kidd/Inpho/Presseye

 

Ulster 30 Edinburgh 0

It was pretty dismal fare for most of the rather damp evening at the Kingspan Stadium, but Ulster hardly minded that as they eventually ground a dismally negative Edinburgh side down and even managed to bag a bonus point win.

Andrew Trimble got Ulster’s first and last try while the key scores which secured the game arrived in the second half from Nick Williams and skipper Rory Best with the Scots’skipper Mike Coman in the bin.

Other than that, it was a barely memorable outing but, crucially, interim coach Les Kiss’s men got back on track after last week’s defeat in Zebre. However, there will be much food for thought with Glasgow now coming to Belfast next Saturday.

After a scrappy opening Ulster finally put some width on the ball and though Louis Ludik knocked on after Jared Payne’s off-load, the home side won a scrum penalty and Paddy Jackson got them off the mark in the 13th minute.

It didn’t exactly kick on from there for the home side though Jackson was fortunate not be carded after taking Tim Visser out in the air and then the home side also got the rub of the green as Jack Cuthbert’s 17th-minute penalty was well off target.

The stalemate looked set to continue after Jackson missed a reasonably straightforward penalty, but then, out of nothing, Stuart McCloskey burst through at a ruck and lined with Andrew Trimble who burst clear rather easily from Visser to score at the posts.

Jackson did the needful and the home side were somewhat relieved to be 10-0 up. However, if they thought that Edinburgh – largely favouring hoofing the ball in the air if they did get possession – were going to lie down they were much mistaken.

Not that former Ulster coach Alan Solomons’S side were particularly impressive, it was just that the home side were well off the mark when it came to accuracy and retaining possession.

After Trimble had almost burst through Edinburgh’s defensive wall late on in the half, Ulster finally got to move the ball with some venom. The net result was an infringement at the breakdown and, this time, Jackson made no mistake from close to the sticks and Ulster trooped off 13-0 up.

Things didn’t improve on the resumption with Ludik being turned over just short of Edinburgh’s line after Ulster tried to bring some tempo to the game and then the Scots were pinged for a crooked feed at a five-metre scrum after opting to maul over Ulster’s line from a kickable penalty in the 49th minute.

Andy Warwick, on at half-time for Ruaidhri Murphy, was at least making an impact and after another scrum penalty was won on his side, Ulster moved it wide off a lineout only for Payne’s pass to Tommy Bowe to float well forward.

Still, Ulster pressed on and Best was held just short of the line just prior to the home side winning a penalty and going for the corner. The upshot was another penalty to Ulster and a yellow card for Coman just short of the hour mark.

Replacement Williams was then driven over but was held up and Ulster kept pressing, going for the corner despite a numerical advantage should they have opted for a scrum. The score came, though, and after a loop round the front of a lineout from Chris Henry, Williams got over in the left corner in the 62nd minute.

Stuart Olding, on for Jackson, missed the tricky conversion but Ulster now looked pretty safe at 18-0 up and this became 25-0 in the 67th minute after Best got over off the back of a lineout maul with Olding this time making the conversion.

The bonus point inevitably came with two minutes of normal time remaining when Trimble got over for his second in the right corner with Olding failing with the difficult conversion.

ULSTER: L Ludik; A Trimble, J Payne, S McCloskey, T Bowe; P Jackson, P Marshall; R Murphy, R Best (capt), W Herbst, A O’Connor, F van der Merwe R Diack, C Henry, R Wilson.

Replacements: A Warwick for Murphy (half-time), N Williams for Wilson (50 mins), D Cave for Ludik, 56 mins), S Olding for Jackson (60 mins), B Ross for Herbst (63 mins), R Herring for Best, L Stevenson for Van der Merwe both (68 mins).

EDINBURGH: G Tonks (N McLennan 39mins), J Cuthbert, S Beard, A Strauss, T Visser, P Burleigh, S Kennedy; (S Hidalgo-Clyne 56mind), R Sutherland (A Dell half-time) R Ford (J Hilterbrand 56mins),, J Andress, (WP Nel 44 mins) A Bresler (O Atkins 39mins), G Gilchrist, M Coman (capt), R Grant (T Leonardi, 50mins) , C Du Preez.

Replacements: N McLennan for Tonks, O Atkins for Bresler (39mins), A Dell for Sutherland (half-time), WP Nel for Andress (44 mins), T Leonardi for R Grant (50mins), S Hidalgo-Clyne for Kennedy, J Hilterbrand for Ford (both 56 mins).

Referee: C Blessano (FIR)

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