Benetton Treviso 13 Cardiff Blues 20
Stadio Monigo, 4.30pm Rabo Direct PRO12
Dan Parks kicked off on a beautiful sunny afternoon in northern Italy and with the weather conditions ideal for running rugby, both teams looked to spread the ball from the start.
The Blues had made two late changes that saw Marc Breeze go to the bench in place of Ryan Tyrell and Dan Fish also on the bench in place of Tom James.
The game came to life in the 7th minute when Paul Tito broke through midfield following good work by Mustoe. Tito slipped a pass to Cory Hill who came to within two yards of the try line before the Treviso winger Brendan Williams stole the ball and started a counter attack from behind his try line, which nearly resulted in Fullback Nitoglia scoring at the other end. However, the Blues got the first points on 15 minutes through a Dan Parks penalty.
The Blues were unlucky not to extend their lead when Rush put Blair into space and the Kiwi fullback sprinted all the way into the Treviso twenty-two. He was just tackled as he tried to put in a try-scoring pass to Sweeney, which was deemed forward. And it was Treviso who got the next score through a De Waal penalty that levelled the score.
The Blues nearly scored again when this time Rush put Cook through the middle, who broke into Treviso half. Scott Andrews was on his shoulder and recycled well, but the Blues failed to use their overlap and Czekaj was pushed into touch in the corner.
However, the Blues didn’t have to wait long for the try when this time Rees broke through the middle and fed Martyn Williams to sprint in the corner. Parks added the extras with a difficult conversion.
The second try soon came after. This time Dan Parks intercepted inside his own half and fed young speedster Harry Robinson who sprinted in the corner. The Blues squandered another opportunity just before half time but went into the break with a 14-point lead.
Half time Benetton Treviso 3 Cardiff Blues 17
Dan Parks scored an early penalty for the Blues to extend their lead further but it was Treviso who nearly got the next try. Again Brendan Williams showed what a threat he was breaking down the right and only just being held short of the try line before the Blues cleared.
There then followed a period of Treviso pressure with the Italian trying to find the gap in the Blues defence inside there twenty-two. Czekaj and Thomas did well to turn the ball over before finally clearing.
Again a wave of Treviso attack came with this time Semenzato just being held over the line and again the Blues defence was solid with Martyn Williams turning over and clearing the ball.
Eventually the Italians scored; predictably it came from driving lineout 5 metres out after Simone Picone emerged with the ball to bring the score to 8-20.
Treviso got their second moments after. They broke all the way from the Blues twenty-two and a neat chip was gathered by Brendan Williams who touched down on the right. De Waal was wide with the conversion but the Blues had secured the win and Treviso the losing bonus point.
Cardiff Blues 15 Ben Blair 14 Richard Mustoe (20off) 13 Gavin Evans 12 Ceri Sweeney 11 Chris Czekaj 10 Dan Parks 9 Richie Rees
8 Xavier Rush 7 Martyn Williams 6 Michael Paterson 5 Paul Tito (c) (62off) 4 Cory Hill (25off) 3 Scott Andrews (72off) 2 T Rhys Thomas 1 Sam Hobbs (62off)
16 Marc Breeze 17 John Yapp (62on) 18 Ryan Harford (72on)19 Macauley Cook (25on) 20 Maama Molitika (62on) 21 Lewis Jones 22 Harry Robinson (20on) 23 Dan Fish
Bentto Treviso 15 Ludovico Nitoglia?14 Benjamin De Jager?13 Tommaso Iannone?12 Andrea Pratichetti?11 Brendan Williams?10 Willem De Waal?9 Fabio Semenzato (captain)?
8 Marco Filippucci?7 Gonzalo Padrò?6 Manoa Vosawai?5 Corniel Van Zyl?4 Francesco Minto?3 Pedro Di Santo?2 Diego Vidal?1 Ignacio Fernandez Rouyet
16 Enrico Ceccato?17 Augusto Allori?18 Carlo Fazzari?19 Valerio Bernabò?20 Enrico Pavanello?21 Simon Picone?22 Ezio Galon?23 Alberto Di Bernardo
Tries Williams x 1 Robinson x 1
Pen Parks x 1
Con Parks x 1
Tries Picone x 1 Williams x 1
Pen De Waal x 1
Yellow Card: Vosawai