United Rugby Championship: Ospreys 49-31 Dragons

Ospreys number eight Morgan Morris stretches over for his second try
Morgan Morris, Ospreys number eight Morgan Morris, stretches over for his second attempt
Ospreys (29) 50
Tries: Smith, Morris 3, Morgan Williams 2, Parry Cons:Anscombe 6 Pen: Anscombe
Dragons (24) 31
Tries: Rosser, Warren, Doge, L Jones Cons: Reed 3, Davies Pens: Reed

Morgan Morris scored three goals to help Ospreys keep their Heineken Champions Cup qualification hopes alive. They won the United Rugby Championship seven-try victory over Dragons.

Dean Ryan's side held a 24-8 lead due to Jarred Rosser, Adam Warren, and Mesake doge tries.

Morris, number eight, scored three tries. Reuben Morgan Williams scored two, and Nicky Smith (and Sam Parry) also crossed.

Gareth Anscombe kicked fifteen points.

After the eight-try scarlet defeat, it was the second consecutive week Ospreys scored 50 points against a Welsh team.

Ospreys' win in Swansea means that if Ospreys win a bonus-point match against Bulls in their final match, on 20 May they will win URC Welsh Shield. This will make them the top region in Europe and allow them to qualify for Europe’s top tournament.

Ospreys could match Scarlets' league points total with a maximum five point victory over Stormers. However, Toby Booth's team would win more matches than their west Wales counterparts.

Dragons had hoped to bounce back from the 23-18 defeatA battling performance will encourage the Gwent region against Zebre, Italy's bottom side. With only two wins this season, the Gwent region remains in 15th position.

The original URC game was scheduled to take place on 26 Dec, but it was canceled. postponed because Ospreys had 18 cases of Covid-19.

Because no Welsh team had qualified for either the quarter-finals or finals of any European competition, it was possible to play this weekend.

The match was played against the backdrop of turbulent rugby week in Wales. A report was commissioned that suggested a cut to a particular region.

George North received his first start after more than a decade, and Justin Tipuric, long-term injury victim was the only one missing from Ospreys’ strongest starting side.

Dragons, on the other hand, were missing Wales forwards Aaron Wainwright and Leon Brown, Will Rowlands and Ross Moriarty. Ollie Griffiths was ranked eighth.

Will Reed, Fly-half, made his Dragons debut after being preferred to Sam Davies. Josh Lewis replaced Jack Dixon, who was injured in the centre.

Also, there was a late withdrawal. Chris Coleman dropped out as prop and Doge started.

Anscombe kicked first penalty, but after an acrobatic Rio Dyer take off the restart Dragons responded with a well executed try for Rosser.

Dragons players celebrate a try from centre Adam Warren
Dragons players celebrate a successful try from Adam Warren, centre Adam

Reed had a fantastic start orchestrating the Rosser score, and the fly-half was also an architect for Warren's second score.

Alun Wyn Jones lost possession and Reed's left foot kick was collected by Rosser to give centre Warren the score.

Alun Wyn Jones was almost attempting to set up a try by Keelan Giles. However, referee Adam Jones decided that Jac Morgan, flanker, had kicked the ball on.

Prop Smith, instead of Gareth Thomas, was quickly replaced as host.

Ospreys inability to handle restarts again hampered them as they coughed possession up, allowing Reed finally to slot over a penalty.

Booth's side was further to blame for their own failure as they attempted to attack deep and lost control with the Dragons, who took advantage of a Doge try. As the Dragons built a 16 point lead, Reed converted.

Ospreys' captain Rhys Webb was injured and Morgan-Williams replaced him as scrum-half.

Again, the home pack responded to a driving maul with Morris digging over.

Michael Collins, who had switched to full-back in the centre, was responsible for the third Ospreys attempt. Morgan-Williams completed it with an incisive stop.

Taine Basham, a Wales flanker was given a yellow card after he made a rude and unneeded trip on Collins.

Ospreys capitalized on the extra man when Morris dived in for his second attempt and the bonus-point score.

Anscombe's conversion gave hosts a 29-24 halftime advantage before a scrappy second half saw Morris complete his three-pointer before he had to be replaced.

Alex Cuthbert was removed from the field following a late tackle by Dragons replacement Sam Davies. Morgan-Williams dived for his second and Parry completed Ospreys scoring.

Lewis Jones, the Dragons replacement, was able to score a consolation. He got into a brawl with Luke Morgan, North and Josh Lewis exchanging pleasantries.

It was an exciting end to a lively Welsh derby date of 11-try.

Ospreys: Collins, Cuthbert; North, Watkin; Giles; Anscombe; Webb (capt); Smith; Lake, Francis; Beard; Alun Wyn Jones; W Griffiths; J Morgan; M Morris

Replacements: Parry G Thomas, Botha. Davies, Lydiate. Morgan Williams, Myler, L Morgan.

Dragons: J Williams; Dyer, Warren, J Lewis, Rosser; Reed, Bertranou; Seiuli, T Davies, Doge, J Davies, Carter, Keddie (capt), Basham, Griffiths.

Replacements: Benjamin, Reynolds, Yendle, Taylor, Fry, L Jones, S Davies, Holmes.

Referee: Adam Jones (WRU)

Assistant Referees: Gareth Newman & Jason Bessant (WRU)

TMO: Sean Brickell (WRU).

Leave a Comment