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Connacht


  • Penalty goals: Nikora (3),
9 - 13

Cardiff Blues

  • Jones,
    Penalty goals: Sweeney (2),
    Conversions: Sweeney,

Blues battle through

Visitors handle tricky conditions the better in Galway

Last updated: 1st September 2012   Subscribe to RSS Feed

phil davies cardiff blues coach

Phil Davies: off to a winning start

Ceri Sweeney

Ceri Sweeney: impressive kicking display

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Cardiff Blues started life under new director of rugby Phil Davies with a battling 13-9 win over Connacht at the Sportsground.

The visitors made the most of the wind at their backs in the first half and showed a clinical edge to be 13-0 ahead at the break.

Ceri Sweeney peppered the wings with intelligent kicks and was in fine form from the kicking tee, landing two penalties and converting Lewis Jones' 30th-minute try from the touchline.

Connacht launched their comeback bid on the back of three Miah Nikora penalties, yet they lacked the killer instinct to overhaul the Blues who deservedly hung on to take the result.

Nikora missed a tricky penalty from the Cardiff 22 after a good bout of set-piece pressure from the Connacht forwards, who included recent Ireland debutant Ronan Loughney.

Cardiff had a strong wind at their backs and began to make headway entering the second quarter, led by their excellent captain Andries Pretorius.

Sweeney booted two penalties in five minutes to edge the visitors ahead against the run of play. As Connacht's error count increased, the Blues capitalised with Josh Navidi disrupting a home lineout and teenage scrum-half Jones pouncing to score in the corner.

The youngster's first senior try was converted with aplomb by Sweeney whose opposite number Nikora missed a late penalty chance to reply.

Rally

But Connacht rallied after a frustrating opening 40 minutes and Nikora got them off the mark from a central penalty.

As the hour mark approached, clever kicking from Sweeney and Jones allied to the Blues' ability to pinch Connacht lineouts kept them on top tactically.

Too many times the hosts wasted decent possession, a close-in rolling maul should have led to a score. They gained some consolation in the form of a second penalty from Nikora and suddenly Cardiff were the ones making mistakes.

George Naoupu forced another penalty which Nikora did well to convert from the right. However, Eric Elwood's men were let down by indecision and knock-ons at crucial stages.

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Forthcoming Guinness PRO12 Fixtures
TimeFixture
Guinness PRO12
Friday 5th September
Guinness PRO12
19:35Munster vs Edinburgh
19:35Ospreys vs Benetton Treviso
Saturday 6th September
14:40Scarlets vs Ulster
17:00Connacht vs Newport Gwent D'gons
17:15Glasgow vs Leinster
Sunday 7th September
17:00Zebre vs Cardiff Blues
Friday 12th September
19:35Ulster vs Zebre
19:35Edinburgh vs Connacht
19:35Newport Gwent D'gons vs Ospreys
20:00Benetton Treviso vs Munster
Saturday 13th September
14:40Leinster vs Scarlets
Sunday 14th September
16:00Cardiff Blues vs Glasgow
Friday 19th September
19:30Munster vs Zebre
19:35Connacht vs Leinster
19:35Cardiff Blues vs Ulster
Saturday 20th September
TBCScarlets vs Benetton Treviso
14:40Newport Gwent D'gons vs Glasgow
Sunday 21st September
16:00Ospreys vs Edinburgh
Friday 26th September
19:35Leinster vs Cardiff Blues
19:35Glasgow vs Connacht
19:35Edinburgh vs Scarlets
Saturday 27th September
16:00Zebre vs Ulster
18:30Munster vs Ospreys
Sunday 28th September
16:00Newport Gwent D'gons vs Benetton Treviso
Friday 3rd October
19:35Ulster vs Edinburgh

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