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Ospreys

Aironi end with a loss

05th May 2012 21:35

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Richard Fussell Ospreys away 2011

Richard Fussell: Early try

Ospreys will play Munster in the RaboDirect PRO12 play-offs at the Liberty Stadium after defeating Aironi 18-11.

In an entertaining opening period, the Welsh region took a 15-11 half-time lead thanks to Richard Fussell and Hanno Dirksen tries, with Dan Biggar adding a penalty and a conversion.

The hosts' response came through a Nick Williams touchdown and two Naas Olivier penalties.

But in Aironi's final game before they are disbanded, their fate was sealed with Biggar's second half three-pointer.

With their home semi-final already secure and no chance of catching league leaders Leinster, the Ospreys effectively had nothing to play for.

However, they started this encounter with intent and were rewarded when Fussell touched down after five minutes.

Olivier reduced the arrears with a penalty, but Biggar converted one of his own to take the score to 8-3. Williams then powered across the whitewash to level the match, but their fly-half failed with the conversion attempt.

The visitors were always dangerous with ball in hand and, after Kahn Fotuali'i had broken the Aironi gainline, Dirksen was on hand to finish off.

After the open nature of the first half, the second, by contrast, was dominated by the set-piece.

And from numerous scrum collapses close to their own line, it was no surprise to see Lorenzo Romano sin-binned for the hosts.

The Ospreys extended their lead to seven points through a Biggar penalty before Tom Smith received a yellow card for the visitors, but Aironi failed to capitalise on the man advantage and the game petered out.

Rugby Union betting odds

The scorers:

For Aironi:
Tries: Williams
Pens: Olivier 2

For Ospreys:
Tries: Fussell, Dirksen
Cons: Biggar
Pens: Biggar 2

Yellow cards: Romano (Aironi), Smith (Ospreys)

Aironi: 15 Paolo Buso, 14 Sinoti Sinoti, 13 Matteo Pratichetti, 12 Gabriel Pizarro, 11 Giovanbattista Venditti, 10 Naas Olivier, 9 Tito Tebaldi, 8 Nick Williams, 7 Simone Favaro, 6 Nicola Cattina; 5 Marco Bortolami (cap), 4 Quintin Geldenhuys; 3 Lorenzo Romano, 2 Roberto Santamaria, 1 Matias Aguero.
Replacements: 16 Fabio Ongaro, 17 Alberto De Marchi, 18 Salvatore Perugini, 19 Carlo Del Fava, 20 Josh Sole, 21 Tyson Keats, 22 Luciano Orquera, 23 Gilberto Pavan.

Ospreys: 15 Richard Fussell, 14 Hanno Dirksen, 13 Andrew Bishop, 12 Ashley Beck, 11 Eli Walker, 10 Dan Biggar, 9 Kahn Fotuali'i, 8 Joe Bearman, 7 Sam Lewis, 6 Tom Smith, 5 Ian Evans, 4 Alun Wyn Jones (Capt), 3 Adam Jones 2 Richard Hibbard, 1 Paul James.
Replacements: 16 Scott Baldwin, 17 Ryan Bevington, 18 Joe Rees, 19 James King, 20 George Stowers, 21 Rhys Webb, 22 Matthew Morgan, 23 Tom Isaacs.

Referee: Neil Paterson

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