Scottish Rugby News and Opinion


Glasgow Warriors 8-19 Ulster

Pete Horne - Photo © Alastair Ross
Pete Horne - Photo © Alastair Ross

Glasgow Warriors slumped to the second Heineken Cup defeat of their campaign after Ulster defeated them 19-8 in front of a capacity Scotstoun crowd.

Despite Glasgow taking an early lead, it was Ulster who dominated proceedings and through the on form Paddy Jackson and a Chris Henry try, they found themselves in a comfortable 19-3 lead with minutes remaining on the clock. The Warriors managed to score a late try from substitute Niko Matawalu but it proved to be too little too late as Ulster ran out deserved winners.

The wind was gusty and rain relentless, making conditions difficult in the early stages; Ruan Pienaar saw his long range penalty effort drift wide of the sticks after three minutes.

It wasn’t just the visiting side that struggled with the wind and rain though, with Peter Horne slamming wide a penalty after 18 minutes. However, the inside centre learnt from his mistake and slotted the ball in between the posts after 23 minutes to give the Warriors a 3-0 lead.

As the wind subsided, Ulster were awarded a penalty from 30 metres after 25 minutes and Paddy Jackson was able to collect three points.

Glasgow proved undisciplined under attack and they committed an offence in their own 22 with half an hour gone allowing Ulster to edge a 6-3 lead.

As the break neared, the wind and rain relented but that didn’t help Peter Horne who saw a 35 metre kick from the touchline sail wide.

Half time- Glasgow Warriors 3-6 Ulster

In the first half, Ruaridh Jackson’s kicking from hand had proven unreliable and that continued early in the second half when he failed to get the required distance on an up and under. This clearly affected his confidence and saw him fail to convert a 42 minute penalty.

With 63 minutes gone, Ulster found themselves parked on Glasgow’s five metre line and after an almighty effort from the forwards, flanker Chris Henry scored the try. There was much debate about whether the ball was grounded but referee Mathieu Raynal awarded the try after referring to the TMO and Paddy Jackson slammed over the resultant conversion.

After going ahead by 10 points, Ulster oozed with confidence and soon increased their lead by three points from another Paddy Jackson penalty.

Jackson was in imperious form and with the final whistle looming he increased Ulster’s lead by a further three points with a 30 metre penalty which sailed into the terracing occupied by a raucous Ulster travelling support.

Despite rarely testing the Ulster defensive line, the Warriors did notch a try in the dying moments through a rare foray into their opponents 22. A cross kick from Ruaridh Jackson brought sighs of frustration from the Warriors crowd but they were soon cheering when substitute Niko Matawalu caught the ball and dotted down.

That was to be the last real action at Scotstoun allowing Ulster to travel home in celebration of the second victory of their Heineken Cup campaign, having effectively put Glasgow’s hopes to bed.

Glasgow, however, will need to reshuffle and pick themselves up ahead of next week’s trip to Italy where they take on Benetton Treviso in the RaboDirect PRO12.

Full time- Glasgow Warriors 8-19 Ulster

UPDATE: Post match quotes:

Gregor Townsend: “I thought we were very competitive in the first half but in the second period we couldn’t get going.

“Ultimately discipline led to them getting points on the board. They also have a strong line out and that helped them score the try which pushed them out of reach.

“We’ve got four games to play in the group and we know we have to win them all to qualify.

“I believe we have a group of players capable of doing that.

“By the time the games come around in December again then we will have a bigger squad of players available.

Al Kellock: “We knew it was going to be hard work and we need to find the added bit of quality that they had and we didn’t.

“The desire is always there but we’ve lost two games in the Heineken Cup now and that is bitterly disappointing.

“We’ve done all the work that suggests we should be winning these games. We need to be brutally honest with ourselves and work out why we didn’t.

“After two games I would never say the campaign is 100% over but we’ve made it extremely difficult.

“The performance wasn’t good enough as we have to win our Heineken Cup games at home.

“I said to the players that the next two games can either make us stronger and better, or they could make us worse.

“We’ve got two massive games coming up the league before the November break and we need to win it.”

Glasgow Warriors-S Hogg, B McGuigan(Matawalu), P Murchie, P Horne(Wight), A Dunbar, R Jackson, H Pyrgos, R Grant, D Hall, M Cusack(Fainga’anuku), T Ryder(Swinson), A Kellock (c), J Strauss(Harley), C Fusaro(Barclay), R Wilson

Replacements-F Gillies, G Reid

Ulster-J Payne; T Bowe, D Cave, P Wallace(L Marshall), A Trimble(Gilroy), P Jackson( P Marshall), R Pienaar, T Court, R Best, J Afoa, J Muller (c), D Tuohy, I Henderson(McComish), C Henry, N Williams;

Replacements- R Herring, C Black, A Macklin, L Stevenson

Man of the Match- Rory Best

Attendance- 6194

6 Responses

  1. Same old,same old I am afraid too many simple errors cost us the game. Dont know if there is a coaching solution to that or if its just a question of inherent ability or lack of it?

  2. Not enough happening with Glasgows attacking game. Runners standing far too deep. On a night like this, you should stick it up the jumper, but if you are going to spread it, at least do it with a bit of nous and awareness. If jackson and Horne cannae put a bit of movement into the backline, I hate to think what Weir and Morrison will do when they inevitably get paired up again when fit. Having DTH and Lamont would have added nothing as the problems stem from the midfield.

  3. Jackson’s kicking from hand continues to be a worry, neither relieving the pressure nor putting them under pressure, both of which were sorely needed in these conditions. It was actually Scott Wight who provided the kick for the last try and he also gave a cracker of a cross field touch finder moments earlier from Glasgow’s half into Ulster’s twenty-two when our attack was going nowhere.
    Ulster’s kicking on the other hand pinned us back again and again and our poor support play (an unfortunate feature all night) saw us turned over and pinged by the ref on quite a few occassions. Didn’t seem to be switched on really, found sleeping in a couple of line-outs too.

    The Fijian looks a real live wire and Scott Wight surely deserves a start. Hogg had little opportunity to show what pace he evidently still has, Hogg at 13 and Murchie at Full back would maybe see him involved more?
    Is it just bad luck or is there something about Glasgow’s conditioning that means there are so many injuries just now, it is a worry.

  4. “the wind was gusty” there was hardly any wind at all. Was a bit worried that the smoke from the fireworks would just sit over the pitch there was so little wind.

    As another contributor has noted it was Scott Wight that put in the cross field kick for our friend from Fiji. He’d been looking for the ball all night but we we rarely pass to the right wing , a sure sign that some of the backs are uncomfortable passing with their left hand.

    Thought we did quite well in keeping their bing ball carriers quite. Nick Williams was not as destructive as he had been in our Rabo encounter early this season.

    Oh, and you seem to have missed that D. Hall was replaced by young Finlay.

    The key statistic (based on what’s available on the ERC site) is that we conceded 17 turnovers to their 11. If you can’t keep the ball, you cant’ build pressure and therefore will struggle to get a penalty or create a scoring opportunity.

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