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Cardiff Blues 43 Calvisano 16

17th December 2005

A near capacity crowd turned up at the Arms Park to watch this crucial Heineken Cup clash and Jonah Lomu’s home debut.

There was a great atmosphere around the ground but it was Calvisano who scored the first penalty in the first minute, while the Blues looked a bit disorganised and nervous. It wasn’t long however before they found their feet, they drove up in to the Calvisano twenty two and excellent passing in the backs and a forceful run by Lomu saw as the ball go wide to the left it was fellow Kiwi Xavier Rush who crossed to get the first try of the match, converted by Nicky Robinson.

Moments after the restart Marc Stcherbina broke brilliantly through the Calvisano defence but he was tackled high and Nicky Robinson kicked the penalty in front of the posts. It wasn’t long before the Blues scored their second try when once again the ball went left and with Lomu attracting the attention of the defence and creating space for others, Rhys Williams was able to break through the inside and score. The next score came following a great break by Nicky Robinson who used his strength and speed to break away from the defence and pass to Rhys Williams who fed Rush who once again scored out on the left, converted by Robinson. The last word of the half however went to Calvisano as they used an overlap and got the ball out to full back Jacobus Van Schalkwyck to score in the corner to bring the score on the half to Cardiff Blues 22 Calvisano 8


Despite excellent pressure from the Cardiff Blues with a neat move involving Rhys Williams, Andy Powell and Xavier Rush and a strong run by Nicky Robinson it was Calvisano who got the first score of the half with a penalty kick by Hercules Kruger. However the Blues soon scored their fourth try and get the bonus point following great work by Xavier Rush and Craig Morgan who put Rhys Williams in the corner. The Blues made a number of substitutions in the second half and they soon scored again when Craig Quinnell drove over from close range.

It was a very niggly game that sometimes spilt over into fighting and the 80th minute saw Martyn Williams and Pratichetti yellow carded. The referee added almost 10 minutes of extra time which saw Calvisano scoring a try through Captain Maurizio Zaffiri. The Blues soon got one back through Sowden-Taylor converted by Lee Thomas to bring the final score Cardiff Blues 43 Calvisano 16.