Monday 22 May 2017

Ulster produce record-breaking display to edge into play-off spot

Ulster 68 Zebre 21

Ulster's Clive Ross is tackled by Andrea De Marchi of Zebre during the Guinness PRO12 Round 9 match. Photo: Oliver McVeigh/Sportsfile
Ulster's Clive Ross is tackled by Andrea De Marchi of Zebre during the Guinness PRO12 Round 9 match. Photo: Oliver McVeigh/Sportsfile
Independent.ie Newsdesk

Independent.ie Newsdesk

Ulster racked up their fifth successive win by trouncing bottom side Zebre to move up to fourth in the league and back into contention for the play-offs.

Les Kiss' side scored a record 10 tries in this rearranged game at Kingspan Stadium and are now four points ahead of the Scarlets, with all the chasing sides having five games remaining.

Marcell Coetzee of Ulster is tackled by Zebre's Tommaso Castello. Photo: Oliver McVeigh/Sportsfile
Marcell Coetzee of Ulster is tackled by Zebre's Tommaso Castello. Photo: Oliver McVeigh/Sportsfile

The game also saw Ulster rack up their biggest points total, beating the 67 points scored against Caerphilly in 2002, in a fixture already sewn up by half-time when the hosts led 35-7.

There was a total of 13 tries from both sides and Ruan Pienaar led the scoring with 17 points from a try and six conversions, while Stuart Olding contributed 11 with his try and three conversions and Luke Marshall bagged two more.

Pienaar's try on 17 minutes put Ulster 21-7 up just as they lost No 8 Marcell Coetzee to injury.

Charles Piutau touched down, Jacob Stockdale powered over, Craig Gilroy got over four minutes after the restart and Piutau got Ulster's seventh.

Ulster's John Andrew scores his side's 9th try against Zebre. Photo: Oliver McVeigh/Sportsfile
Ulster's John Andrew scores his side's 9th try against Zebre. Photo: Oliver McVeigh/Sportsfile

Zebre scored a consolation try through Guillermo Roan before normal service was resumed when John Andrew and Olding touched down for Ulster's eighth and ninth tries. Paul Marshall completed the rout with Ulster's 10th try before Lloydd Greeff grabbed a third for the Italians.

Ulster - J Payne; C Gilroy, J Stockdale, L Marshall, C Piutau; S Olding, R Pienaar; C Black, R Herring (c), W Herbst; K Treadwell, A O'Connor; R Diack, C Henry, M Coetzee. Reps: C Ross (Coetzee, 19), J Andrew (Henry, 46), A Warwick (Black, 46), P Marshall (Pienaar, 46) R Ah You (Herbst, 46), P Nelson (Payne, 57), F van der Merwe (O'Connor, 65), D Busby (Piutau, 72).

Zebre - D Berryman; M Bellini, T Boni, T Castello, L Greef; S Bordoli, C Engelbrecht; A de Marchi, O Fabiani, B le Roux, Q Geldenhuys (c), V Bernabo, M Cornelli, G Koegelenberg, F Ruzza. Reps: L Ferraro (for Fabiani, 62) B Postiglioni (for De Marchi, 57), G Roan (for Le Roux, 58), J Furno (Bernabo, 55), J Nibert (Cornelli, 62), G Palazzani (Englebrecht, 40), M Pratichetti (Boni, 62) M Mornas.

REF - I Davies (WRU).

Irish Independent

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