Cardiff Blues 50 Gloucester 12
EDF Energy Cup Final Saturday 18 April 2.30pm kick off
Over 40 buses full of traveling Cardiff Blues supporters made the journey to Twickenham for the EDF Energy Cup final and Nicky Robinson kicked off proceedings in the April sunshine.
The Blues broke away in the opening minutes with Fau Filise picking up at the base of the ruck and gaining valuable ground before Spice continued the move. Spice, Rush Shanklin and Halfpenny continued the move which saw the ball come to within a yard of the try line.
Spice however was injured in the move and was replaced by Rees. The Blues were then awarded a penalty that Blair dragged wide. Gloucester made the most of the drop out and worked their way to the Blues twenty-two and awarded a penalty of their own that Lamb hooked wide.
The first try came from a superb break by Robinson. He took the ball into the Gloucester half and was ably supported by the ever-present Martyn Williams, who passed on to Halfpenny. The flying winger passed to Richie Rees who flipped a beautiful pass back to Halfpenny to touch down. Blair converted.
The Blues were looking dangerous with some rampaging runs by the forwards and slick hands in the backs. They were awarded another penalty that this time Blair converted.
Halfpenny was soon on the scoreboard again. Roberts broke through the defence, passed to Shanklin who carried on the move and Martyn Williams showed his experience, showing one way and passing out to the right where Halfpenny was on ran to run it in.
Gareth Williams nearly got the third when he broke down the left touchline after Rush had passed back to him from a lineout, only to be pushed into touch just short.
Despite being 17-0 down Gloucester werent out of it. Gloucester moved the ball across the back line and a long pass took out Rush and Halfpenny, who did well to tackle Foster but not enough to stop the winger crossing in the corner.
Tom James however soon struck back with a try of his own just before half time, which gave the Blues a commanding halftime lead.
Half time Cardiff Blues 22 Gloucester 5
The second half lacked the intensity of the first but there was still more to come.
Robinson did well to gather a high ball and passed on to Gethin Jenkins who made great strides and fed Blair who sprinted in for a great try.
A number of substitutions saw Andy Powell and Ceri Sweeney come onto the field. Sweeneys first touch saw him score. A big up and under saw the ball bounce into his hands for him to touch down.
Gloucester were awarded a penalty try following a great break by Blues bound Gareth Cooper but it was too little too late.
The Blues finished a great day with tries for Blair and Shanklin touching down to crown a perfect day for the Blues.
15 Ben Blair_14 Leigh Halfpenny_ (67off) 13 Tom Shanklin_12 Jamie Roberts_11 Tom James_10 Nicky Robinson (67off)_9 Jason Spice (3off) 8 Xavier Rush_7 Martyn Williams_6 Maama Molitika_(60on) 5 Paul Tito (c)_4 Bradley Davies (67off) _3 Tauf'au Filise_2 Gareth Williams_1 Gethin Jenkins 16 John Yapp_17 T Rhys Thomas_18 Deiniol Jones_(67on) 19 Andy Powell_ (60on) 20 Richie Rees (3on)_21 Ceri Sweeney_(67on) 22 Gareth Thomas_ (67on)
Tries Halfpenny x 2 James x 1 Blair x 2 Shanklin x 1
Penalties Blair x 1
Conversions Blair x 6
Tries Foster x 1 Pen Try x 1
Conversions Barkley x1