Edinburgh 7 Ulster 29
Ulster secured a PRO 14 quarter final with a 29-7 bonus point win at Murrayfield in Edinburgh on Friday night. Edinburgh’s hopes of reaching a quarter final spot is literally out of their hands and they must depend on Zebre beating Benetton. If Benetton get a bonus point win in that game then Edinburgh’s play-offs hopes will be all but over.
John Cooney put Ulster ahead with an early penalty, they landed the first try a few minutes later. Ulster were far more superior than the hosts, the power, pace and accuracy was superb. The try came after the ball was ripped from the hands of Nick Timoney’s hands by Grant Gilchrist, the ball spinned loose only for Jordi Murphy to touch down. The resulting conversion was converted by Cooney, Ulster now leading by 10-0. Ulster were very organised in defence and Edinburgh couldn’t get through. Indeed they missed a couple of kicks from penalties to touch as well as kick from a penalty which was in front of goals. Ulster got another score just before the break, this time Billy Burns looped a pass out wide to Baloucoune who glided past two Edinburgh defenders to dive over in the corner. Cooney missed the conversion. Ulster 15 Edinburgh 0 at half time.
On the resumption some poor kicking from Edinburgh led to another Ulster try. Henry Pyrgos kicked a box kick straight to touch, from the resulting line out on 55 minutes Ulster won moved it across the field to find Rob Lyttle who sprinted down the touch line leaving 3 Edinburgh defender in their wake to cross over for the third Ulster try. Edinburgh sparked a mini revival they surged forward using very quick ball, this time John Barclay showed some nice foot work and stepped inside to register points on the board. Ross Ford came off the bench for his 199th appearance, possibly his last at Murrayfield, which delighted the crowd, but that couldn’t spur the team on. Instead it was Ulster who finished strongly and secured the all important bonus point on 77 minutes when Billy Burns put finishing touches to a well worked move. John Cooney was left to kick the conversion. Ulster 29 Edinburgh 7 the final score.