Ulster strike early

Ulster 18 Glasgow 10

Ulster strike early

With 14 squad members sidelined for one reason or another, Anscombe’s promise to give youngsters an opportunity proved worthwhile. Tries by wingers Michael Allen and Craig Gilroy, with early replacement Niall O’Connor adding the rest with the boot, brought immediate success for Anscombe. A solitary try by former Ulster winger Tommy Seymour was all that Glasgow could manage, thanks to some crunching tackling behind the gain line by the Ulster defence.

Ulster were hit with the loss of fly-half Paddy Jackson after only 10 minutes with a leg injury. Replacement O’Connor’s first task was to slot over a 40-metre penalty to edge the home side in front.

Glasgow, though drew level in the 20th minute when Nick Williams was penalised for not rolling away at a ruck in front of his posts and Weir did the needful from close range.

O’Connor, who had settled comfortably into his role on his debut return following a year with Connacht, missed a couple of penalties that would normally be within his compass.

A yellow card Seymour for pulling down a great line-out drive by Ulster, had the home side’s tails up on the run-up to half-time. They wasted no time in scoring the first try of the new season when after Williams, and then the industrious Lewis Stevenson made yards infield, the ball was switched left for Jared Payne to float a superb long pass for winger Allen to glide in unopposed.

Ulster received an unexpected present at the start of the second half when Glasgow’s fly-half Weir tossed out a long speculative pass but the alert Gilroy pounced and ran 60 metres unopposed under the posts for O’Connor to add the easy extras.

The final quarter started with replacement Tom Court coming on for his 100th appearance for Ulster while Glasgow replacement fly-half Ruaridh Jackson saw a penalty bang against rebound back into play with the aforementioned prop snaffling out any danger in front of the posts.

But Glasgow bounced back right into contention in the 68th minute when Ulster overturned possession and Jackson floated a long ball out right to put the pacy Seymour in acres of space to sprint over in the corner. Jackson conversion narrowed Ulster lead to 15-10.

Ulster put the game out of Glasgow’s reach with another penalty by O’Connor.

Scorers for Ulster: Tries: Allen, Gilroy; Pen: O’Connor 2; Cons: O’Connor.

Scorers for Glasgow: Tries: Seymour Pen: Weir Con: Jackson.

ULSTER: J Payne; M Allen, C Farrell (Cave, 65), L Marshal, C Gilroy; P Jackson (O’Connor, 10), M Heaney (Marshall, 60); C Black (Court, 61): R Herring, J Afoa, J Muller, capt, L Stevenson, R Diack, S Doyle, N Williams (McComish, 54).

GLASGOW: P Murchie; T Seymour, A Dunbar (Horne, 77), G Morrison, S Lamont; D Weir (Jackson, 60), H Pyrgos (Cusiter, 40); G Reid (Grant, 40), F Gillies (Hall, 62), M Cusack Low, 52), T Ryder, A Kellock capt (Eddie, 31), R Harley, C Fusaro, R Wilson.

Referee: M Mitrea (Italy).

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