Newport Gwent Dragons 28 Cardiff Blues 15
Friday 29 April 4.05pm kick off
The Dragons dominated the early play and the only ray of light for the Blues was a break out of defence by Czekaj ably supported by Tito who took the ball to the halfway line, before being awarded a penalty that Parks converted.
However, it was the Dragons who got the first try of the afternoon, following god build up work by Brew. When the ball emerged from the ruck Tovey showed quick hands to pass to Steffan Jones who showed his pace to sprint past Gareth Williams and Bradley Davies to score. Tovey converted.
The Dragons soon doubled their try tally when Tovey, who was orchestrating things well for the home side, put in a neat cross field kick gathered by Charteris, who flipped the ball inside to Brew to power over.
Tovey added a further penalty to bring the score after 20 minutes to 15-3 which reflected the fact that the Blues weren’t playing well with some sloppy passing in the backs putting pressure on them and the Dragons capitalizing whenever possible.
The Blues however did have a chance to attack on the right with Czekaj and Warburton coming close but Faletau did superbly to gather and pass to Jones to clear.
Eventually the breakthrough came and the turning point for the Blues was when Adam Jones was shown the yellow card for killing the ball on the Dragons try line. From the scrum the Blues drove, Rush carried, before Warburton picked up and drove over the line. Parks converted having missed two earlier penalties.
Half time Newport Gwent Dragons 15 Cardiff Blues 10
The Blues started the second half having lost Casey Laulala and Bradley Davies through injury with Hewitt and Jones coming on in their place. And Jones played a pivotal part in the next score.
With a penalty kicked to the corner Jones won the ball cleanly and the Blues pack drove Rush over for their second try of the afternoon and level the score. Parks missed the conversion.
It was the Blues forwards who were the driving force in the match, pick and goes gaining ground, while the backs were still finding it hard to get any rhythm to their play.
Despite the Blues pack fighting for everything it was the Dragons who regained the lead from a driving line out, with James Jones referring the decision to the TMO, who awarded the try to Andrew Coombs. Tovey converted.
It would be another tense finish with only 7 point in it and 10 minutes left but the Blues did have a chance to attack after Czekaj had kicked them into the Dragons twenty two. Accidental offside saw them concede a scrum that the Dragons cleared and any hope and getting something from the game vanished when Steffan Jones slotted a penalty for the Dragons in the dying minutes and Wayne Evans dropped a goal. It was a worthy win for the Men of Gwent and would mean that the Blues would still have it all to do in Parc y Scarlets next Friday.
Cardiff Blues 15 Dan Fish 14 Chris Czekaj 13 Casey Laulala (40ff) 12 Jamie Roberts 11 Tom James 10 Dan Parks (62off) 9 Richie Rees
8 Xavier Rush 7 Sam Warburton 6 Michael Paterson 5 Paul Tito (c) 4 Bradley Davies (42off) 3 Taufa'ao Filise 2 Gareth Williams 1 John Yapp (25off)
16 Rhys Williams 17 Sam Hobbs (25on) 18 Scott Andrews 19 Deiniol Jones (42on) 20 Ma'ama Molitika 21 Lloyd Williams 22 Ceri Sweeney (62on) 23 Dafydd Hewitt (40on)
Newport Gwent Dragons?Steffan Jones, Adam Hughes, Tom Riley, Ashley Smith, Aled Brew, Jason Tovey, Wayne Evans,?Phil Price, Lloyd Burns, Ben Castle, Luke Charteris (c), Adam Jones, Danny Lydiate, Gavin Thomas, Toby Faletau
Replacements?Tom Willis, Hugh Gustafson, Dan Way, Andrew Coombs, Lewis Evans, Pat Leach, Jonathan Evans, Mathew Jones
Tries Warburton x 1 Rush x 1
Pen Parks x 1
Con Parks x 1
Newport Gwent Dragons
Tries S Jones x 1 Brew x 1 Coombs x 1
Pen Tovey x 1 Jones x 1
Con Tovey x 2
D/G Evans x 1
Referee: James Jones
Yellow Card: Adam Jones