January 15, 2010
Glasgow Warriors 29 - 25 Newport Gwent Dragons
Heineken Cup match played at Firhill on Friday January 15th 2010 | 6 comments
Rob Dewey opened the scoring for Glasgow Glasgow survived a spirited fightback from the Dragons before winning this high scoring, but error strewn, Heineken Cup clash at Firhill.
Glasgow took the lead in the opening two minutes with scrum-half Colin Gregor pouncing on Tom Willis's lineout throw before feeding Bernie Stortoni and his pass found Rob Dewey who battled over to score under the posts.
Johnnie Beattie extended Glasgow's lead three minutes later when he charged down a loose kick but Rob Sidoli was just at sharp at the other end, blocking Colin Gregor's clearance to score.
Gregor and Ruaridh Jackson, in his first start at stand-off this season in the absence of Dan Parks, slotted over three penalties.
But Dragons replied with a James Harris try despite appeals that he benefitted from a knock-on.
Rhodri Gomer-Davies scored the visitors' third try as they threatened to overrun the wilting Warriors before a Jackson penalty gave Glasgow some breathing space.
The Dragons looked the more threatening side after the break for long spells and penalties from Shaun Connor and James Arlidge saw them take the lead.
However, Warriors would not be denied and, after a great kick to touch from Parks, hooker Fergus Thomson scored their third and final try to secure victory and halt a run of four losses in five meetings against Dragons.
Glasgow's defence was tested to the limit with try-saving tackles from DTH van der Merwe and Dan Parks keeping their line intact.
There was bad news for Glasgow when flanker Calum Forrester was stretchered from the field with a bad knee injury.
The Warriors cannot qualify for the quarter-finals but retain hope of making the Amlin Challenge Cup.
Glasgow coach Sean Lineen said: "The most important thing was that we won and so kept up the winning momentum."
Focusing on the Magners League, he said: "That is our side that will play during the Six Nations, and they now have the winning habit. We also have tonight's win up our sleeves ahead of the Dragons' return in April."
The coach praised Ruaridh Jackson who was making his first appearance after a shoulder injury.
Sean said: "Considering Ruaridh had only had that minute of rugby before he was injured in the first game if the season he did OK. He was rusty but he was trying things.
"I changed the half backs sooner than I had intended [in the 51st minute]. Dan Parks and scrum-half Mark McMillan immediately brought control."
Sean was also happy with the peformances of two of his young forwards: "Loose head prop John Welsh wanted the ball and lock Richie Gray was my man of the match."
Can whoever does this report please replace the BBC reporter?
If you check their website report there is at least three mistakes in it, the best being that Davie McCall was an unused replacement!!!
How could Beattie have been MOTM? How many times did he try passes from contact that weren't on and gave ball to Dragons, once under his own posts? And how could Lineen give it to Gray, some good moments but restarts a shambles. John Welsh my man of match by a mile. Much of team very sloppy and lots of missed tackles, but it's a win over the Dragons, so not complaining. Well, I am, but less than I usually do...
Angry that we played unacceptably badly.
But happy because we played unacceptably badly and still won.
It was an excellent game and Dragons contributed hugely to the excitement. Also hats off to their no7 for getting ref to stop play on Forrester's injury.
However I agree with Lineen that we needed to tidy the looseness which was addressed by the introduction of the half backs and McMillan especially made a difference.
Beattie needs a kick up the bum for weakly giving the ball away in contact 3 times as he otherwise played really well.
The backs looked very dangerous when Jackson was on. Its a totally different game with the change of 1 player and Lineen has a lot of work to do in changing style next season. We might have won 50-45 or lost by the same margin had Jackson stayed on. But what entertainment!
Good game by both teams although Glasgow did seem to have the edge for the win. Only problem was the Ref Fitzgibbon, he was behind the game play, missing a number of forward passes by the Dragons as well as crossing and taking players out off the ball.
I was listening to the BBC Rugby programme on the way home with John Beattie and Peter Wright. There must have been some off air discussion with the referee match assessor who if I have picked up Beattie and Wright correctly had said that the Ref had told his assistants to keep out of it he would deal with the match. Not sure on the rules around this but from my perspective a rather arrogant and pompous approach a Ref needs all the help he can get with all that goes on in modern rugby, particularly one who was either miles behind play or so close to it he was in the way. The number of forward passes, blocking and taking people out off the ball will reduce rugby to American football. Says very little for the backbone of the assistant refs if they go along with this. Any way a win is a win.
If you're replying to an existing comment, please use the 'Reply to this comment' link above the entry. This will display the comments in a way which is far easier for other readers to follow.