Ospreys consolidate top four spot

Date published: December 2 2016

Ospreys scored four tries to temporarily go to top of the PRO12 standings with a 31-22 victory over Edinburgh on Friday.

After a high-scoring first half, the second period was relatively low key, but Ospreys secured a bonus point win with their only points of the last 40 through Keelan Giles try. 

Meanwhile, Edinburgh made the class between the sides look less than it was with a late try as they briefly threatened a comeback in a game they deserved little from. 

Ospreys had the best of the first half, running in three tries on their way to a half-time lead. An early Sam Davies penalty though was responded to by the visitors' Will Helu, who showed good pace to go down the wide channels and go over on his first appearance of the season. 

Ospreys were back in front with two quick-fire tries before the midway mark of the first half through wing Daffyd Howells, which was converted by Davies before Dan Baker went over at the base of the scrum with Davies again adding the extras. 

Edinburgh came back into the contest with a converted try of their own as Blair Kinghorn caught a kick up field before going over, and the deficit was reduced to five points. It didn't take long though for the hosts to extend their advantage as Ma'afu Fia went over from short range, finding it all too easy with Davies again on target from the tee, but on the stroke of half-time, the points difference between the sides was back into single figures as Duncan Weir slotted home a penalty. 

Early in the second half, Ospreys secured the bonus point and everything but the win as Keelan Giles sprinted to the corner with Davies again adding the two points. But, as the game entered the dying embers, Edinburgh gave themselves a fighting chance through replacement Viliame Mata, scoring in successive games, who went over using his strength to make up the final yard. Weir added the extras but it wasn't enough to gain a losing bonus point.

The scorers:

For Ospreys:
Tries: Howells, Baker, Fia, Giles
Cons: Davies 4
Pen: Davies

For Edinburgh:
Tries: Helu, Kinghorn, Mata
Cons: Weir 2
Pen: Weir

Ospreys: 15 Dan Evans, 14 Keelan Giles, 13 Ashley Beck, 12 Josh Matavesi, 11 Dafydd Howells, 10 Sam Davies, 9 Brendon Leonard, 8 Dan Baker, 7 Justin Tipuric, 6 James King, 5 Alun Wyn Jones (c), 4 Rory Thornton, 3 Ma’afu Fia, 2 Sam Parry, 1 Nicky Smith 
Replacements: 16 Scott Baldwin, 17 Paul James, 18 Dmitri Arhip, 19 Lloyd Ashley, 20 Sam Underhill, 21 Tom Habberfield, 22 Dan Biggar, 23 Kieron Fonotia

Edinburgh: 15 Blair Kinghorn, 14 Damien Hoyland, 13 Chris Dean, 12 Junior Rasolea, 11 Will Helu, 10 Duncan Weir, 9 Sam Hidalgo-Clyne, 8 Nasi Manu, 7 Jamie Ritchie, 6 Magnus Bradbury, 5 Grant Gilchrist (c), 4 Ben Toolis, 3 Murray McCallum, 2 Stuart McInally, 1 Allan Dell
Replacements: 16 Neil Cochrane, 17 Kyle Whyte, 18 Felipe Arregui, 19 Lewis Carmichael, 20 Viliame Mata, 21 Nathan Fowles, 22 Jason Tovey, 23 Glenn Bryce

Referee: Dudley Phillips (Ireland)
Assistant Referees: Sean Gallagher (Ireland), Sean Brickell (Wales)
TMO: Kevin Beggs (Ireland)