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Newport Gwent D'gons


  • Penalty goals: Tovey (4),
    Drop goals: Tovey,
15 - 8

Ulster

  • Wilson,
    Penalty goals: Jackson,
  • Guinness PRO12
  • 6th Sep 2013
  • KO 19:15
  • Ground: Rodney Parade, Newport
  • Att: 5,165

RaboDirect PRO12: Ulster lose to Dragons on opening night

Last updated: 9th September 2013  

Paddy Jackson Ireland v France

Paddy Jackson: Ulster and Ireland goalkicker

Jason Tovey Dragons 2011

Jason Tovey: five kicks proved crucial

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The Dragons picked up an impressive 15-8 victory over Ulster in their RaboDirect PRO12 opener at Rodney Parade on Friday.

Five kicks from man-of the match Jason Tovey saw the Dragons secure a morale-boosting win, cancelling out Roger Wilson's try for last year's finalists.

Tovey edged the hosts ahead on eight minutes, when he slotted over a neat drop-goal.

The Ulster scrum earned a deserved penalty on twelve minutes, following some tremendous work which led to Paddy Jackson duly levelling the scores. Tovey restored parity on fifteen minutes, however.

The penalty count accumulated for both teams; with the ball being fiercely contested on the floor. One such concession saw Ulster launch a formidable maul just yards from the home try line; ending with Roger Wilson touching down to make it 6-8.

Ulster's scrum ascendancy yielded another penalty on 33 minutes, but Jackson suffered a dreadful miss.

Tovey likewise missed a difficult attempt on 38 minutes. By the cusp of half-time, the Welsh hosts had begun to find their rhythm, and were subjecting last year's beaten finalists to discernible pressure.

It was Tovey who scored the first points of the second half on 49 minutes, when he landed a penalty following poor Ulster control at the breakdown.

Cushion

Tovey extended the Dragons' lead on 59 minutes; earning the Welsh side a thoroughly deserved four-point cushion.

The introduction of a raft of substitutes on 65 minutes galvanised the Irishmen; Ian Porter and Sean Doyle in particular threatening with ball in hand. But the game refused to ignite, and the Dragons defended stoutly.

A stellar break by centre Jack Dixon saw him find Richie Rees in space, creating another penalty opportunity for that man Tovey on 70 minutes. The number ten continued his imperious form to make it 15-8 to the hosts.

Ulster were now desperately trying to salvage the game. Replacement fly-half James McKinney went to the corner on 73 minutes, and the away forwards subsequently camped in the home 22. But the Dragons' rearguard was simply magnificent. The hosts were able to clear their lines, therefore, and winning a couple of crucial penalties at scrum time assisted their cause.

It was the Welshmen who held on to seal a thoroughly deserved victory that guarantees their league campaign the best possible start. Ulster will rue a litany of errors, but for the Dragons this was a statement of early season promise.

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Guinness PRO12 Table

Guinness PRO12 Table - December 20 2014
Pos Team P Pts
10 Zebre 9 9
Forthcoming Guinness PRO12 Fixtures
TimeFixture
Guinness PRO12
Sunday 21st December
Guinness PRO12
16:00Dragons vs Zebre
Friday 26th December
14:05Cardiff Blues vs Dragons
17:00Munster vs Leinster
18:45Ulster vs Connacht
Saturday 27th December
14:40Glasgow vs Edinburgh
17:15Ospreys vs Scarlets
Sunday 28th December
14:00Zebre vs Treviso
Thursday 1st January
14:05Newport Gwent D'gons vs Cardiff Blues
17:00Connacht vs Munster
Friday 2nd January
19:35Edinburgh vs Glasgow Warriors
Saturday 3rd January
14:00Treviso vs Zebre
14:40Leinster vs Ulster
17:05Scarlets vs Ospreys
Friday 9th January
19:35Connacht vs Edinburgh
19:35Glasgow vs Scarlets
Saturday 10th January
14:40Cardiff Blues vs Leinster
15:00Zebre vs Munster
Sunday 11th January
14:00Treviso vs Ulster
16:00Ospreys vs Newport Gwent D'gons
Wednesday 14th January
TBCLeinster vs Newport Gwent D'gons
TBCScarlets vs Connacht
TBCEdinburgh vs Ospreys
TBCUlster vs Benetton Treviso
TBCZebre vs Glasgow
TBCMunster vs Cardiff Blues

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