Final Pre-season win for Edinburgh


Edinburgh Rugby saw off the challenge of Ulster at Goldenacre on Friday night with a win in their build-up to the 2015-16 Guinness PRO12 Season, fielding most, if not all of the 30+ man squad they brought along.

Ulster had the vast majority of the possession in the first 15 minutes, but made very little progress against the Edinburgh defence, with only a couple of incursions into the opposition 22. A scrum penalty then gave the hosts a chance to push upfield and into the opponents 22 for the first time. Another scrum penalty from the lineout then gave No. 9, Nathan Fowles, a shot at goal to put the home side 3-0 ahead.

However, before the ‘euphoria’ of the lead had died down, Ulster came straight back from the restart with an attack straight through the middle which put wing, Tommy Bowe, over near the corner to take the lead 5-3.

Another fairly lacklustre 20 minutes, or so, passed before the next bit of excitement for the crowd when Edinburgh’s forwards took the initiative from a lineout win close to the Ulster line and proceeded to maul and ruck their way across the pitch, ending with Magnus Bradbury being heaved over the line for Edinburgh’s opening try. Fowles slotted home the easy kick and the score was out to 10-5, which is where it remained until the stroke of half-time.

EdinReport-EdinvUlst-2A break from Roddy Grant found the ball with Phil Burleigh. He moved the ball on to Nick McLennan who broke through a double tackle and shifted the ball on the wing Otulea Katoa who fired up the line to dive over in the left corner. Fowles kicked the difficult conversion to put the Edinburgh side 17-5 ahead at the break.

The second half wasn’t quite as thrilling, from a scoring point of view, for the home fans as Ulster were the first on the board with a 64th minute try from Andrew Trimble for a 17-10 score line.

A few good moved from Edinburgh nearly had Damien Hoyland and Katoa over the line, but the hosts had to settle for a brace of Jack Cuthbert penalties to leave the final score at 23-10 to Edinburgh.

Not the best match you’ll see, but with a virtual full team swap for Edinburgh, the players are, somewhat reassuringly, all playing off the same Alan Solomons game plan.

Images from the match will follow here over the next few days – it’s been a busy weekend!