Ulster make hay with another home win and bonus point
Andrew Trimble’s try sparks side into life ahead of arrival of Les Kiss
Nick Williams celebrates after scoring Ulster’s third try in the Guiness Pro 12 game against Cardiff Blues at Kingspan Stadium. Photograph: Darren Kidd/Inpho/Presseye/
Ulster 24 Scarlets 17
Mind you, it wasn’t the most impressive of results, but the home side were good enough for their four tries – scored by Andrew Trimble, Paul Marshall, Stuart McCloskey and man of the match Nick Williams.
Losing Josh Turnbull first for a stray boot on Marshall and then Aled Summerhill for upending Craig Gilroy wasn’t pretty, though Ulster finally made hay from Turnbull’s absence.
Ulster went behind after just three minutes when Wiehahn Herbst was pinged at the first scrum and Rhys Patchell did the needful to open the Blues’ account.
Came to life
Ulster came to life when Trimble made it over in the right corner. Patchell hit a penalty to nudge his side in front again.Ulster badly needed something and got it when they made a rare sortie into the 22. Turnbull was shown yellow for his boot hitting Marshall’s face and Marshall scored from the resulting scrum. Humphreys converted – and Ulster somehow led 12-9 at the break.
McCloskey bagged Ulster’s bonus point with his 49th minute effort though it went unconverted. Herbst was sin-binned in the 55th minute and Navidi barged over two minutes later from a lineout. With less than 10 minutes remaining, Patchell took his chance bring the Blues within losing bonus point territory.
ULSTER: L Ludik (D Shanahan 69mins); A Trimble, S Arnold (D Cave 54mins ), S McCloskey C Gilroy; I Humphreys (P Jackson 50mins ), P Marshall; C Black (A Warwick 50mins ), R Herring (capt), W Herbst, L Stevenson (P Browne 54mins), F van der Merwe, R Wilson, S Reidy (W Faloon 70mins), N Williams.
CARDIFF BLUES: D Fish; A Summerhill, T Isaacs, A Thomas, R Smith; R Patchell, T Knoyle; S Hobbs (T Davies ),M Rees (E Lewis 64mins), C Mitchell (T Filise 55mins ), L Reed (L Jones 63mins), J Down, C Dolan (M Cook 55mins), J Turnbull, J Navidi (capt).
Referee: B Whitehouse (WRU).