Ospreys v Edinburgh
Edinburgh Rugby were unable to overcome an Ospreys side studded with returning internationalists as the home side ran in four tries to the visitors’ three to record a 31-22 bonus point victory tonight at Liberty Stadium.
The visitors went into the interval nine points down and their chances of overturning the deficit were hampered further when lock Grant Gilchrist and Allan Dell were shown yellow cards giving Ospreys a man advantage for 20 minutes of the second period.
Edinburgh scored two of their three tries in the first-half through Will Helu and Blair Kinghorn, with Viliame Mata grabbing his side’s only score of the second-half minutes from the final whistle.
Ospreys opened the scoring with a penalty from returning Wales stand-off Sam Davies, before wing Helu replied on behalf of Edinburgh with a score in the corner following some exquisite handling from his colleagues (3-5).
The home side’s prompt retort came through wing Dafydd Howells, who scythed through the Edinburgh defence to finish off a well-worked set-piece move, before back-row Dan Baker crashed over from short-range to add another shortly after. Davies’ successful conversions gave Ospreys a 17-5 lead after 18 minutes.
After much deliberation from the TMO, Blair Kinghorn was awarded with a score close to the half-hour mark as he scooped up a loose ball from a Weir kick and raced into the corner to touch down for the try. A wonderful touchline conversion from his stand-off closed Ospreys’ lead to five points (17-12).
Following the tit-for-tat flow of the game, the Swansea men’s response was swift with prop Ma’afu Fia peeling off from a driving maul to battle his way over the whitewash from short range.
Davies maintained his 100% record with the conversion before his opposite number, Weir, closed the half with a penalty for the Scottish outfit.
Half-time: Ospreys 24 – 15 Edinburgh Rugby
The Welshmen drew first blood in the second-half as wing Keelan Giles raced into the corner for his side’s fourth try, which Davies’ converted to extend his side’s lead to 16 points (31-15).
Edinburgh were reduced to 14 men when lock Gilchrist was shown a yellow card, and his side managed to withstand a number of Ospreys forays in that period paying credit to their dogged defence. However the home team were again handed a man advantage when prop Dell was sent to the sin-bin for a scrum offence minutes after his captain’s return to the field.
A lull in the scoring was ended when Edinburgh replacement back-row Mata skipped through the Ospreys defence and used his impressive power to stretch out and touch down for the score two minutes from the end. Weir’s conversion closed the scoring for the day at 31-22 in favour of the Welsh outfit.
Full-time: Ospreys 31 – 22 Edinburgh Rugby