Guinness Pro12: Ospreys 44-13 Treviso

Jeff Hassler goes over for a try
This was Canadian Jeff Hassler's ninth Ospreys try in 27 appearances
Ospreys (23) 44
Tries: N Smith, Webb, Hassler, Baldwin, Dirksen Cons: Biggar 4, Davies Pens: Biggar 3
Treviso (6) 13
Try: Fuser Con: Carlisle Pens: Carlisle 2

Ospreys kicked off their Pro12 campaign with a comfortable 44-13 bonus-point win over Treviso at Liberty Stadium.

The hosts were 37-6 ahead before visiting lock Marco Fuser went over in response.

Nicky Smith, Rhys Webb, Jeff Hassler, Scott Baldwin and Hanno Dirksen went over as the hosts began life without four departed British and Irish Lions.

Dan Biggar added 17 points with the boot conversion while Treviso's Joe Carlisle kicked eight points.

Wing Eli Walker (hamstring) and scrum-half Rhys Webb (ankle) returned from injuries, but the hosts were without captain Alun Wyn Jones, who was rested ahead of what is expected to be a busy season.

In the absence of the Wales and British and Irish Lions lock, 23-year-old Lloyd Peers led Ospreys from the second-row while centre Andrew Bishop made his 200th appearance for the region.

In the process Bishop became only the second player to pass the landmark after prop Duncan Jones, who came off the bench at the Liberty Stadium.

There were home debuts for Dan Evans, Josh Matavesi and Rynier Bernardo for the Welsh side who aim to improve on a fifth-placed 2013-14 finish.

Webb, wing Hassler, hooker Baldwin and replacement wing Dirksen were able to make the most of the home forwards' dominance.

But the first try went to Smith, the 20-year-old prop having help lay the foundations with his powerful scrummaging.

Number eight Dan Baker was brought down short of the line, but Smith's mobility was rewarded as he followed up to power over.

Smith's tight-phase prowess was such that opponent Rupert Harden was sin-binned early in the second period.

However, it remains to be seen if Ospreys can overcome the loss of those Lions forwards - prop Adam Jones (Cardiff Blues), lock Ian Evans, back-five Ryan Jones (both Bristol) and hooker Richard Hibbard (Gloucester) - over the entirety of the season.


Ospreys fly-half Dan Biggar: "We put in a good performance tonight.

"We know we're going to have to play a lot better and we know we're going to have to play better teams - there's no doubt about that.

"But it's a good stepping stone. There's a lot for the boys to learn in the first game of the year.

"Some of the boys are coming into their first proper season and they'll learn an awful lot from that."


Ospreys: Dan Evans; Jeff Hassler, Andrew Bishop, Josh Matavesi, Eli Walker; Dan Biggar, Rhys Webb; Nicky Smith, Scott Baldwin, Aaron Jarvis, Lloyd Peers (capt), Rynier Bernardo, Joe Bearman, James King, Dan Baker.

Replacements: Sam Parry, Duncan Jones, Daniel Suter, Tyler Ardron, Morgan Allen, Martin Roberts, Sam Davies, Hanno Dirksen.

Treviso: Simone Ragusi; Ludovico Nitoglia, Luca Morisi, Sam Christie, Michele Campagnaro; Joe Carlisle, James Ambrosini; Matteo Muccignat, Davide Giazzon, Rupert Harden, Marco Fuser, Corniel Van Zyl (capt), Meyer Swanepoel, Tomas Vallejos Cinalli, Leo Auva'a.

Replacements: Giovanni Maistri, Salesi Manu, Matteo Zanusso, Marco Lazzaroni, Mat Luamanu, Marco Barbini, Angelo Esposito, Henry Seniloli.

Sin bin: Harden, 44; Manu, 78

Referee: David Wilkinson (Ireland)

Assistant referees: Greg Morgan, Ben Whitehouse (Wales)

Citing commissioner: Gwyn Bowden (Wales)

TMO: Derek Bevan (Wales)

Rhys Webb touches down
Rhys Webb has made six Wales appearances
Andrew Bishops tries to beat Treviso's defence
Andrew Bishop made his Ospreys debut in February, 2005 against Border Reivers

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