Pro12: Newport Gwent Dragons 19-5 Edinburgh

By Dafydd PritchardBBC Wales Sport
T Rhys Thomas
Dragons (9) 19
Tries: Gustafson Cons: Tovey Pens: Tovey 3, Prydie
Edinburgh (0) 5
Tries: McInally

Newport Gwent Dragons beat Edinburgh to avenge their European Challenge Cup semi-final humiliation and dent the Scots' Champions Cup hopes.

Dragons edged a scrappy first half as two Jason Tovey penalties and one from Tom Prydie put them 9-0 in front.

Hugh Gustafson's try extended the hosts' lead, rendering Stuart McInally's score a consolation.

Edinburgh stay seventh in the Pro12, giving Scarlets the chance to claim sixth place on Sunday.

The west Wales region are one point ahead of Edinburgh and will secure their place in next season's Champions Cup if they beat Cardiff Blues in their penultimate game of the season on Sunday.

Dragons were already out of Champions Cup contention but, having been thrashed 45-16 by Edinburgh in the Challenge Cup semi-finals three weeks earlier, the Gwent region had earmarked this rematch as an opportunity to gain revenge.

They appeared to be fuelled by a motivation to exorcise that Murrayfield mauling as they made a strident start at Rodney Parade.

Utilising their strong rolling maul and powerful ball-carriers, Dragons pounded Edinburgh's try line but were thwarted by the visitors' robust tackling.

Nic Cudd takes on the Edinburgh defence
Nic Cudd takes on the Edinburgh defence at Rodney Parade.

The hosts' pressure did at least produce some points, with two Tovey penalties putting them 6-0 ahead.

Edinburgh were unable to assert themselves in a disjointed first half, as Dragons defended tenaciously and went into the interval 9-0 up thanks to a Prydie penalty.

The home side continued to dominate after the restart, again using their potent rolling maul which this time produced a try.

Edinburgh prop Willem Nel was sin-binned for trying to bring one Dragons maul down illegally and, when the hosts' set-piece clicked into gear from the next line-out, replacement hooker Gustafson was on hand to dive over.

Faced with a daunting 16-0 deficit, Edinburgh poured forward to keep alive their fading Champions Cup hopes and they did manage a late try as captain McInally plunged over in the corner.

But Tovey struck his third penalty to replenish Dragons' advantage, sealing a well-earned victory to ease the painful memories of April's Challenge Cup capitulation.

NG Dragons: Tom Prydie; Ashton Hewitt, Tyler Morgan, Jack Dixon, Hallam Amos; Jason Tovey, Luc Jones; Phil Price, T. Rhys Thomas (capt), Brok Harris, Cory Hill, Rynard Landman, Nick Crosswell, Nic Cudd, Taulupe Faletau.

Replacements: Hugh Gustafson, Lloyd Fairbrother, Dan Way, James Thomas, Ollie Griffiths, Richie Rees, Dorian Jones, Geraint Rhys Jones.

Edinburgh: Jack Cuthbert; Dougie Fife, Sam Beard, Andries Strauss, Tim Visser; Phil Burleigh, Sam Hidalgo-Clyne; Alasdair Dickinson, Ross Ford, WP Nel, Fraser McKenzie, Ben Toolis, Stuart McInally (capt), Hamish Watson, Cornell Du Preez.

Replacements: Neil Cochrane, Rory Sutherland, John Andress, Anton Bresler, Roddy Grant, Nathan Fowles, Tom Heathcote, Tom Brown.

Referee: Gary Conway (IRFU)

Assistant referees: Rhys Thomas, Ben Whitehouse (WRU)

Citing commissioner: Jeff Mark (WRU)

TMO: Gareth Simmonds (WRU)

Top Stories