Sunday, September 14, 2014

Guinness Pro 12: Americas Players Review - Round 2

Photo Blogo Sport
The second round of the Celtic-Italian league took place over the weekend. An unconventional start to the round saw four of the six league matches played on Friday evening. Consequently there was only one match played on each of Saturday and Sunday. Involved were players from North and South America. Combined the regions represented by NACRA and CONSUR represent the only geographical area yet to be allocated a Rugby World Cup. Argentina has expressed interest in hosting Rugby World Cup 2023 and has a compelling case to do so. 

Benetton Treviso 10-21 Munster
Having struggled in the opening round against Edinburgh Munster fought back to defeat Italian side Benetton Treviso on Friday. The result sees Munder moving to sixth while Treviso is bottom of the standings. Former Puma Tomás Vallejos Cinalli started in the back-row for the Italians.

Dragons 15-17 Ospreys
An all-Welsh derby on Friday saw a packed Rodney Parade treated to an interesting match in which the Dragons started and finished well while the Ospreys did enough to hold on for a tight away victory. Involved for the Ospreys were Canadians Jeff Hassler and Tyler Ardron while former USA junior Hanno Dirksen was also involved. 

Edinburgh 13-14 Connacht
Having won in Limerck a home victory in round two against Connacht was on the cards for Edinburgh. The team, though, failed to spark and a late try to the Irish province saw the Galway based side returning home with four league points. Former Puma Tomás Leonardí started in the back-row while the uncapped Joaquín Domínguez was on the bench for Edinburgh.

Ulster 33-13 Zebre
A perfect three from three for Irish provinces on Friday was achieved with Ulster running out to a bonus point victory over Zebre. With the new European club competition now requiring teams to qualify on league performance and not nationality the Irish sides are needing to secure all the points they can. To qualify for next season Zebre simply needs to have more points than Treviso. Involved against Ulster were Argentine players Gonzalo Garcia and Luciano Leibson. Of them one is capped by Italy and the other being considered at present.

Leinster 42-12 Scarlets
The only match of the round played on Saturday saw 2014 champions Leinster having few problems in knocking-over Welsh region the Scarlets. The match, as a contest, was over by half time as Leinster undlerined why it has been the leading team in the competition over recent years. 

Cardiff Blues 12-33 Glasgow Warriors
Suggestions have been made on social media that the Cardiff Blues is to be one of the leading sides in the competition this season. The side, however, was well beaten by Scotland's Glasgow Warriors in the final match of the round and failed to score a try despite playing at home and having a new coach with years of Super Rugby experience. The USA's Scottish international Tommy Seymour started on the right wing for Glasgow while Canadian international DTH van der Merwe was a replacement.

1
Ospreys
9
2
Connacht
8
3
Glasgow Warriors
8
4
Ulster
8
5
Leinster
6
6
Munster
5
7
Edinburgh
5
8
Cardiff Blues
5
9
Scarlets
3
10
Dragons
2
11
Zebre
0
12
Benetton Treviso
0

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