Humphreys' form a bonus as Ulster see off Cardiff
Ulster 32 Cardiff Blues 13
Published 26/02/2011 | 05:00
A hungry Ulster side saw off Cardiff Blues at Ravenhill last night with a display right out of the top drawer.
It was a skilled, determined and disciplined performance, with excellent linking between backs and forwards undoing the Welshmen, who only managed one try through full-back Dan Fish.
Tries by Craig Gilroy, Ruan Piennar, Andrew Trimble and Luke Marshall brought Ulster a vital bonus point while man-of-the-match Ian Humphreys controlled matters and contributed 12 points with his educated left boot.
The Blues controlled possession for the opening 10 minutes. However, it was Ulster who opened the scoring in the 11th minute with a wonderful piece of ingenuity by Humphreys.
The Ulster fly-half took a 22-meter drop-out in his own half and, faced with a horde of Blue jerseys, he tapped the ball over their heads and re-gathered before giving the scoring pass to Gilroy to race around under the posts. Pienaar had a big influence on the game and grabbed Ulster's second try in the 26th minute.
Cardiff responded with a penalty by Ceri Sweeney to leave Ulster seven points to the good at the break and that was further enhanced in the 50th minute by a Trimble try in the corner.
Ulster had Paddy McAllister sin-binned but it made little difference as they claimed their bonus in the 68th minute when Marshall took a short ball from Humphreys to run in.
Ulster -- A D'Arcy; A Trimble, N Spence, L Marshall (Whitten 79), C Gilroy (Seymour 40); I Humphreys (Marshall 72), R Pienaar; B Young (McAllister 40, Cronin, 65) A Kyriacou (Brady 51) D Fitzpatrick (Cronin 72); J Muller (Capt), T Barker (McComb, 64); C Henry, P Wannenburg (Anderson 72), W Faloon.
Blues -- D Fish; R Mustoe, G Evans, D Hewitt, T James (Loxton 79); C Sweeney, R Downes (Slater 68); T Filise (Trevett, 78), R Thomas (Williams 72), S Andrews (Hobbs 72); D Jones, P Tito (Capt); A Pretorius (Molitika, 68), M Williams (White 75), X Rush.
Ref -- J Jones (WRU).