Tuesday 24 October 2017

Parks makes second-string Blues pay price for four yellow cards

Glasgow 30
Leinster 6
magners league

It was always going to be mission impossible for what was largely a second-string Leinster side and this was confirmed at Firhill last night as Glasgow Warriors achieved the win they needed in their bid to achieve a a place in the play-offs.

Leinster, however, showed the depth of their reserves by holding a near full-strength Glasgow side to just three tries. But the visitors were badly let down by lapses of discipline which resulted in four sin-binnings.

The Blues looked far from underdogs as they took the game to their hosts in the opening minutes and, after forcing a turnover and then showing more aggression in the contact area, they won a penalty.

Full-back Ian Madigan, however, failed to capitalise, sending his kick wide of the posts. A second kick at goal by Madigan also went wide, although this time his effort from the touchline was a tad ambitious.

The penalty miss seemed to be a cue for greater action from Glasgow, who stepped up the pace significantly to score their opening try after 22 minutes.

It came from a burst by Johnny Beattie and then a break by Max Evans, before full-back Bernardo Stortoni dotted down in the corner, Dan Parks adding the conversion to reach the 1,500 points mark for his club.

Leinster opened their account with a penalty by Madigan from in front of the posts and three minutes later the full-back thumped the ball from a metre and half inside the Leinster half to claim a further three points, reducing the deficit to one.

The Warriors quickly restored their four-point advantage with a Parks penalty and then, after replacement Dominic Ryan had been sin-binned for not rolling away after a tackle on Chris Cusiter, the Warriors out-half extended his tally with a second penalty goal for a 13-6 half-time lead.

Four minutes into the second half Leinster lost a second player to the sin-bin after lock Trevor Hogan had high-tackled Cusiter, but this time Parks was unable to extract the punishment points. Five minutes later, after Fergus Thomson had ploughed into the Leinster defence, Parks was back on target, extending his side's lead to 16-6.

Leinster's yellow-card woes continued as Rhys Ruddock joined Hogan in the sin-bin for preventing release on his own line, but, against fierce resistance from the visitors, Glasgow were unable to make their two-man numerical advantage count.

Glasgow, hurt by their own ineptitude, roared back to score from a blindside intrusion from replacement wing Rob Dewey, with Parks converting.

Leinster were finding it difficult to contain Glasgow and were not helped when Mike Ross became the fourth resident of the sin-bin, requiring uncontested scrums.

It looked as though Leinster might prevent a further score, but right on full-time, Dewey added his second try, capably converted by Parks, to seal a sumptuous win.

Glasgow Warriors -- B Stortoni (D Weir 79); C Shaw (R Dewey 58), M Evans, G Morrison, H O'Hare; D Parks, C Cusiter (M McMillan 58); K Tkachuk (E Kalman 74), F Thomson (D Hall 58), M Low, T Barker, A Kellock, K Brown, J Barclay, J Beattie

Leinster -- I Madigan; S Keogh, E O'Malley, K Tonetti (B Macken 74), M Keating; P O'Donohoe, C Keane (A Conway 58); R McCormack (J McGrath 60), B Jackman (J Harris-Wright 50), M Ross, T Hogan, C Ruddock (M Flanagan 69), R Ruddock, P Ryan (D Ryan 7) , S Keogh (S Monahan 74).

Ref -- J Jones (Wales).

Irish Independent

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