Cardiff Blues 17 - 15 Ospreys
Fri 31 August 19:40 Cardiff Arms Park Att: 9,187 Ref: Tim Hayes Celtic League

Cardiff Blues 17 Ospreys 15

Fri 31 Aug 2007 22:22 Cardiff Blues 17 Ospreys 15
Early on Nick Robinson kicked for territory and Xavier Rush drove to within five yards of Ospreys line. From the scrum the Blues were awarded a penalty that Robinson slotted to give the Blues the lead.

The Ospreys were also in the mood to play and it was only good tracking back by Jamie Roberts and Gareth Williams and clearance by Spice that eased pressure on Blues in their own twenty two.

The Ospreys soon levelled with a penalty by Connor and a quick tap penalty by Tiatia put Byrne in space. Good cover tackling by Ben Blair once again eased the pressure on the home side.

The Blues frustratingly were loosing ball in tackle in what sometimes was a heated match. The referee awarded a penalty for what looked like obstruction on Rhys Williams as Nicky Robinson kicked ahead. However the penalty went to the Ospreys for Williams being offside and Connor kicked the goal to give the Swansea team the lead.

On the halfway mark, Connor’s long distance penalty extended the visitors lead to 9-3. However there was still enough time for Jason Spice, Paul Tito and Deiniol Jones to show great hands and drive to within 5 yards of the Ospreys try-line. Nick Robinson passed the ball out wide to Maama Molitika who took out two men and passed to Rhys Williams to score in the corner.

Half Time Cardiff Blues 8 Ospreys 9

At the start of the second half the Blues were awarded a penalty just inside their own half. Robinson stepped up and hit it clean between the uprights to restore the Blues lead and minutes later Ospreys hooker Richard Hibbard was awarded a yellow card and sent to the bin for 10 minutes.

The Blues tried to take advantage of the numbers and drove to within yards of the Ospreys try-line only to fail to gather the ball from the ruck. However, they managed to win the scrum against the head and elected to go for goal from the resulting penalty. Robinson converted to bring the score to Blues 14 Ospreys 9.

Connor struck another long distance effort minutes later to narrow the gap.
A clever move in the lineout saw Gareth Williams charging down the line to within two yards of the Ospreys whitewash, but as the Blues tried to shift the ball wide the move broke down and the Ospreys cleared.

Robinson struck a long range effort to extend the lead in what was a very tense match. The outside half was unlucky with another long range effort hitting the upright.

The Blues were beginning to dominate and Rhys Williams was unlucky as his drop goal attempt just went wide, but the Ospreys were not giving up.

Connor once again struck from long distance to narrow the Blues lead to two points and ensure a nail biting finish.

Instead of kicking down to the Ospreys half the Blues tried to play on the half way line. They were penalised for their adventure with a penalty to the Ospreys. Thankfully Connor struck it wide and the Blues recorded record breaking 16 consecutive league wins at the Arms Park.

Cardiff Blues 15 Ben Blair 14 Rhys Williams 13 Tal Selley 12 Dafydd Hewitt 11 Jamie Roberts 10 Nick Robinson 9 Jason Spice 8 Xavier Rush (c) 7 Robin Sowden-Taylor 6 Maama Molitika 5 Paul Tito 4 Deiniol Jones 3 Gary Powell 2 Gareth Williams 1 John Yapp 16 Scott Roberts 17 Ross Johnson 18 Robert Sidoli 19 Mark Lewis 20 Richie Rees 21 Nick Macleod 22 Marc Stcherbina

Ospreys 15 Lee Byrne 14 Stefan Terblanche 13 Mark Taylor 12 Andrew Bishop 11 Aled Brew 10 Shaun Connor 9 Justin Marshall 8 Filo Tiatia
7 Richard Pugh 6 Andy Lloyd 5 Mike Collins 4 Brent Cockbain (Capt) 3 Andrew Millward 2 Richard Hibbard 1 Paul James 16 Barry Williams
17 Cai Griffiths 18 Mike Powell 19 Ben Lewis 20 Martin Roberts 21 Jonathan Spratt 22 Jonathan Vaughton

Attendance 9187


TRIES R. Williams x1
PENALTIES N. Robinson x 4 Connor x 5

Referee - Tim Hayes
Touch judge - Jonathan Mason
Touch judge - Scott Fleming
TMO - Neil Ballard