Cardiff Blues 23 - 9 Leicester Tigers
Sat 25 October 14:35 Cardiff Arms Park Att: 9,815 Ref: Dave Pearson Anglo Welsh Cup

Cardiff Blues 23 Leicester Tigers 9

Sat 25 Oct 2008 17:15 Cardiff Blues 23  Leicester Tigers 9
The score gave the home team a bit of momentum and Nicky Robinson again kicked well this time putting in a grubber kick for Jamie Robinson and Richard Mustoe to chase. The ball beat them both, and at the ruck following the line out, Molitika was unlucky not to keep hold of the ball with nobody between him and the try line.

Robinson was kicking superbly out of hand, finding good field position and Blair soon added another penalty attempt.

Leicester also looked to attack but Hougaard was wide with a penalty and drop goal attempts, however they worked their way up well in to the Blues half, with Rabeni always looking threatening.

New Welsh squad members Andy Powell and Leigh Halfpenny were having superb games for the Blues, with Powell showing his strength bouncing off the defenders, and Halfpenny showing his skill and speed.

It was a hugely entertaining first half and despite Hougaard getting a penalty on the stroke on half time the Blues looked as though they could take another English scalp.

Half Time Cardiff Blues 6 Leicester Tigers 3

The second half started with a blistering break by Leigh Halfpenny from his own twenty-two. The young wing did well to beat his man and had Blair outside him who would have had a good chance to reach the try-line. However, he went into contact and the ball was lost forwards. The Blues built on this start and looked to attack but were thwarted.

A Leicester knock on saw the Blues awarded a scrum and the Blues scored a beautiful try from it. Spice passed to Nicky Robinson, who delayed his pass to perfection to Jamie Roberts who crashed through midfield, drew his man, and passed on to Jamie Robinson to score under the posts. Blair converted 13-3.

Hougaard pulled three points back with a penalty, but it was the Blues who nearly got the next score.

Leigh Halfpenny was again showing his class. He tracked back to collect a Leicester hack through and with one sidestep cut a huge hole in the Leicester defence, working his way all the way up to the try line. He nearly scored but Rabeni got back first. From the clearance the Blues looked to have scored before the referee drew them back for a forward pass by Blair who had put in Jamie Robinson in the corner.

The referee wasn’t the most popular man in the ground again, when he penalised Nicky Robinson for a perceived high tackle. Hougaard had the aim but not the distance on the penalty from his own half, but the Blues were under pressure with Leicester camped on their try line. However, a superb tackle and steal from Jamie Robinson allowed brother Nicky to clear. The referee again awarded Leicester the penalty and Hougaard converted.

Fao Filisie almost scored from the restart with pick up from the ruck and a blistering break only to be held up a yard from the try line. The Blues looked to spread the play to the left but Jamie Robinson just failed to gather a difficult pass with a man breathing down on him. Leicester again were awarded a penalty that allowed them to clear.

Leicester were penalised for holding onto the ball in the ruck giving the Blues a penalty with the scores at 13-9 with only five minutes left. Blair stepped up but just didn’t quite have the distance.

Blair however did well to follow a clearance kick minutes later. Leicester failed to clear and Martyn Williams put pressure on the defence that saw the Blues awarded another penalty in front of the posts. This time Blair was accurate.

With minutes to go the Blues stole a Leicester line out and spread the ball left where Mustoe nearly got in the corner. It was another tense finish but the Blues put the game to bed when Spice dived over for the try. Blair added the conversion to crown a superb display by the team.

Final Score - Cardiff Blues 23 Leicester Tigers 9

15 Ben Blair 14 Leigh Halfpenny 13 Jamie Robinson 12 Jamie Roberts 11 Richard Mustoe 10 Nick Robinson 9 Jason Spice 8 Andy Powell 7 Robin Sowden Taylor (70on) 6 Maama Molitika 5 Paul Tito (c) 4 Deiniol Jones (70on) 3 Taufa’ao Filise 2 Gareth Williams (70on) 1 John Yapp 16 Gary Powell 17 T. Rhys Thomas (70on) 18 Scott Morgan (70on) 19 Martyn Williams (70on) 20 Richie Rees 21 Ceri Sweeney 22 Tom Shanklin

15 Johne Murphy 14 Seru Rabeni 13 Danny Hipkiss 12 Toby Flood 11 Matt Smith 10 Derick Hougaard 9 Harry Ellis 1 Boris Stankovich 2 George Chuter 3 Julian White
4 Richard Blaze 5 Marco Wentzel 6 Martin Corry (captain) 7 Tom Croft  8 Jordan Crane Replacements 16 Mefin Davies 17 Dan Cole 18 Ben Kay 19 Brett Deacon 20 Julien Dupuy 21 Ayoola Erinle 22 Tom Varndell

Attendance 9,815

Cardiff Blues
Tries J Robinson x 1 J Spice x1
Pens Blair x 3
Cons Blair x1

Leicester Tigers
Pens Hougaard x 2