Home team Away Team

Ulster

  • Trimble (2), Pienaar, Diack,
    Penalty goals: Pienaar (3),
    Conversions: Pienaar (4),
37 - 13

Cardiff Blues

  • Hewitt,
    Penalty goals: Patchell,
    Drop goals: Patchell,
    Conversions: Patchell,
  • Guinness PRO12
  • 3rd May 2013
  • KO 19:45
  • Ground: Ravenhill, Belfast
  • Att: 10,700

RaboDirect Pro12: Ulster top table with victory over Cardiff Blues

Last updated: 4th May 2013   Subscribe to RSS Feed

 Ruan Pienaar - Ulster Heineken Cup

Ruan Pienaar: Bagged 22 points for league winners

 Trimble Andrew Ulster

Andrew Trimble: Two second half tries for Ulster

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Ulster have secured a home semi-final in the RaboDirect PRO12 play-offs after finishing top of the regular-season table with a 37-13 victory over Cardiff Blues.

The Irish province maintained their fine home record with a bonus-point triumph to book a last-four showdown with Scarlets at Ravenhill on Friday.

Ulster came into the final match of the regular season needing three points to clinch the league title and, with Cardiff's play-off hopes well and truly over, they started as strong favourites to do so.

But the Blues, who had already recorded two away victories over Irish provinces this season, threatened to upset the apple-cart when Dafydd Hewitt crossed inside four minutes.

The home side could have been forgiven for suffering early nerves but that setback simply kicked the men in white into gear.

Ruan Pienaar swifly wiped out the deficit by converting his own try before trading penalties with Rhys Patchell.

But the Blues got back in front again shortly afterwards when Patchell kicked a neat drop goal and there were no further scores in a scrappy remainder of the half with the visitors leading 13-10.

Ulster hit the ground running on the resumption and after Nick Williams had carried strongly off a scrum, Paul Marshall spun the ball right to Andrew Trimble who smashed over and got the nod from the TMO.

Pienaar converted and then added a long range penalty shortly afterwards to give his side a 20-13 lead.

This was then increased to a 10-point lead after Patchell spilt a Pienaar Garryowen and the Blues conceded a penalty.

With the rain now falling heavily, Patchell was wide with a penalty attempt to get the Blues back in the game and Ulster immediately punished his profligacy when a mix-up at the back saw Trimble race on to grab his second try of the night.

Pienaar superbly converted and Ulster now looked secure and out of sight at 30-13 and with both benches beginning to empty the game became even more fractured and scrappy.

Ulster bungled a number of scoring chances and then with Hewitt sent to the bin, 100-cap man Robbie Diack charged over at the posts which Pienaar again converted with three minutes remaining.

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Guinness PRO12 Table

Guinness PRO12 Table - January 11 2015
Pos Team P Pts
12 Zebre 13 10
Forthcoming Guinness PRO12 Fixtures
TimeFixture
Guinness PRO12
Friday 13th February
Guinness PRO12
19:35Ulster vs Benetton Treviso
20:05Edinburgh vs Ospreys
Saturday 14th February
19:35Munster vs Cardiff Blues
Sunday 15th February
12:45Scarlets vs Connacht
13:00Zebre vs Glasgow
15:00Leinster vs Newport Gwent D'gons
Friday 20th February
19:05Benetton Treviso vs Cardiff Blues
19:35Edinburgh vs Ulster
19:35Leinster vs Zebre
Saturday 21st February
14:40Scarlets vs Munster
17:15Glasgow vs Ospreys
Sunday 22nd February
16:00Newport Gwent D'gons vs Connacht
Friday 27th February
19:35Ospreys vs Leinster
19:35Ulster vs Scarlets
Saturday 28th February
19:15Munster vs Glasgow
Sunday 1st March
12:45Cardiff Blues vs Edinburgh
17:00Zebre vs Newport Gwent D'gons
17:15Connacht vs Benetton Treviso
Friday 6th March
19:35Cardiff Blues vs Connacht
19:35Glasgow vs Zebre
Saturday 7th March
14:40Ospreys vs Munster
17:15Scarlets vs Leinster
18:00Benetton Treviso vs Edinburgh
Sunday 8th March
16:00Newport Gwent D'gons vs Ulster
Friday 27th March
19:35Leinster vs Glasgow

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Phil Edwards

Phil Edwards

Read the thoughts and opinions of Phil Edwards with skysports.com