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Ospreys 35 Newport Gwent Dragons 51
Newport Gwent Dragons director of rugby Lyn Jones admitted his side couldn't help but take their foot off the pedal after racing out to a huge lead in their LV= Cup victory over Welsh rivals Ospreys.
Ross Wardle opened the scoring at Bridgend Ford Brewery Field before a pair of Lewis Evans tries from driving mauls put the result almost beyond doubt with less than a quarter of the game gone.
A double from Cory Hill and one from Jonathan Evans made the score 48-0 before five second-half tries from Ospreys meant the final score was 51-35.
It was Hanno Dirksen, Dafydd Howells, Cai Griffiths, Aisea Natoga and a penalty try that added some respectability for the hosts but Jones said he couldn't fault his team's overall performance.
"Winning is important as it gives you confidence. We were 41-0 up at half-time as we made very few errors, pulled together and played well," he said. "It was difficult to maintain motivation after the interval.”
Ospreys have a 100 per cent record in this year's PRO12, including a 17-15 win over the Dragons at Rodney Parade, but have now suffered back-to-back LV= Cup losses following the visitors' imperious attacking display.
The 51 points they conceded was the most in a single game since their inception although their second-half salvo ensured they left with a four-try losing bonus point.
But despite the improved display after the break, coach Gruff Rees claims the first-half horror show is what will stick with him.
"The first half was cringe worthy and border line unacceptable. Our attitude was in question and a few home truths were told at half-time," he said.
"We allowed their first-choice front five to dominate and we conceded three of the softest tries you'll ever see from driving line-outs with our kick and chase game also being dreadful.”
|Ospreys||Newport Gwent Dragons|
|Tries: Dirkson, Howells, Griffiths||Tries: Wardle, L Evans 2, Hill 2, J Evans|
|Conversions: Davies 5||Conversions: G R Jones 6|
|Penalties: Natoga||Penalties: G R Jones 3|
Cardiff Blues 19 Scarlets 13
Elsewhere, after edging out Welsh rivals Scarlets in the LV=Cup, Cardiff Blues Academy Manager Richard Hodges says his young guns showed everyone what they are capable of.
The Blues battled past Newcastle Falcons in their opening encounter and they made it two wins out of two with their 19-13 victory over Scarlets.
In an edgy encounter Ellis Jenkins' try was enough to get Cardiff over the line.
It could have been different for Scarlets who took a second-half lead through Sion Bennett but they couldn't hang on as Cardiff snatched the win.
And, while Hodges knows it was far from a vintage display, he was enthused by his team's efforts.
"We know a lot about these players but maybe other people don't. We want to give them exposure," he said.
"What that second half in Newcastle did was bring the group tight. And I think you saw that tonight in the final two minutes and the way we closed the game out. We're rightly proud of them.”
Bennett's score had put Scarlets 13-9 ahead but the Blues piled on the pressure and Scarlets were eventually undone by Jenkins who found some space to run over in the corner.
However, while they weren't able to secure a late win, Scarlets' performance skills coach Ioan Cunningham believes his side can walk away from Cardiff with their heads held high.
"It was a frustrating second half but also I'm very pleased with some of the young players and what they produced tonight," he said.
"This experience has definitely helped the young boys and hopefully they can kick on from this."
|Tries: Jenkins||Tries: Bennett|
|Conversions: Humberstone||Conversions: Lewis|
|Penalties: Humberstone 3, Thomas||Penalties: Lewis 2|