Saturday, May 16, 2015

Guinness Pro 12: Americas Exports - Final Round

Round 22, the final round of the Guinness Pro 12 season came to a close this afternoon and with it the Semi Finalists were confirmed. The Celtic-Italian League champion is to be one of the Glasgow Warriors, Munster, Ulster or the Ospreys. Pressure is on Ulster to reach the final due to it being played in Belfast. The final four all have players from the Americas who are in contention to play for Argentina, Canada or the USA at the World Cup. 

Treviso 13-17 Scarlets
Italian side Benetton Treviso and Welsh region the Scarlets both secured their places in next season's European Rugby Champions Cup today. Treviso did so by finishing higher than Italy's other side, Zebre, while the Scarlets did it the hard way. The Llanelli based side finished in sixth position to give Wales two teams in Europe next season. Uncapped Argentine prop Romulo Acosta was on the bench for Benetton Treviso.

The southern Irish city of Limerick will play host to one of the two Semi Finals after Munster completed a big home win over the Newport Gwent Dragons in Cork. Musnter finished in the top two to secure a home Semi Final against the Ospreys. Former Puma Eusebio Guiñazú continues to push for a return to the test arena. He started at hooker for Munster.

Scottish capital city side Edinburgh missed out on qualifying for the 2015-2016 European Rugby Champions Cup by not taking advantage of a home match against Leinster. With it being the final match of Leinster's season the province's international players were involved. Neither of Edinburgh's two Argentine players received game time.

Cardiff Blues 29-5 Zebre
The Welsh capital city's regional team, the Cardiff Blues, ended a disappointing season on a high by winning five tries to one against bottom of the table Zebre. Neither team will be involved in the European Rugby Champions Cup next season. Joaquín Tuculet said goodbye to Wales this weekend. Argentine players Gonzalo Garcia and Luciano Orquera started for Zebre. Both are capped by Italy. 

Connacht 20-24 Ospreys
Also in with a chance of qualifying for Europe was Connacht who hosted Welsh region the Ospreys in Galway. Instead the Ospreys confirmed they will be back in Ireland next weekend while Connacht will not play again this season and will play in the European Challenge Cup rather than Champions Cup. Canadian captain Tyler Ardron played second-row for  the Ospreys while former USA Junior Hanno Dirksen played right wing. Dirksen turned down selection for the USA at Rugby World Cup 2011 to instead focus on playing for Wales. He remains uncapped. 

Glasgow Warriors 32-10 Ulster
A bonus point home victory by the Glasgow Warriors ensured a home Semi Final for the Scottish side. In order to qualify for the final Glasgow must defeat Ulster, the hosts of the 2015 final. Tommy Seymour from Tennessee played on the right wing for Glasgow. He is capped by Scotland. Canadian winger DTH van der Merwe was not involved. He will join the Scarlets after the World Cup.

#
Team
Pts
1
Glasgow
75
2
Munster
75
3
Ospreys
74
4
Ulster
69
5
Leinster
62
6
Scarlets
61
7
Connacht
50
8
Edinburgh
48
9
Dragons
42
10
Cardiff Blues
35
11
Treviso
19
12
Zebre
15

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