Planet Rugby

James brace bags it up for Blues

12th October 2007 22:12

Share:

Tom James, Cardiff Blues

James' late brace secured the bonus-point

Two late Tom James tries gave cardiff Blues a 30-16 bonus-point victory over Connacht in the Magners League at Cardiff Arms Park on Friday.

At one stage it looked as if a stuttering Blues side were going to go down to a plucky Connacht side, who lead after the break. But, despite leading 10 minutes into the second half, Connacht were blown away by two tries in three minutes from 20-year-old winger James.

The Blues began a little casually and were punished when a Ben Blair clearance was charged down and visiting fly-half Tim Donnelly kicked to the corner, where Samoan wing Ofisa Treviranus was tackled off the ball by opposite number James.

There might have been a case for a penalty try, but referee Peter Fitzpatrick called play back for off-ide and Donnelly had to settle for an easy kick in front of the posts.

The Blues produced a scintillating handling move, out of touch with the general tone of the evening, the ball flowing right and left before full-back Blair scuttled in for a try he then converted.

The home side dominated territorially, but were unable to capitalise, while Connacht's rare ventures into the Blues' half produced two more penalties for Donnelly.

It was first-half injury time before the Blues scored again.

Good work by prop Scott Roberts and centre Tal Selley seemed to be leading nowhere until returning World Cup star Martyn Williams broke hooker John Fogarty's tackle to go under the posts and give Blair an easy conversion.

Both sides continued to kick away possession and Blues fly-half Dai Flanagan was guilty of a particularly aimless effort, collect by Ireland World Cup representative Gavin Duffy, who raced 50 yards before replacement scrum-half Conor O'Loughlin dived over. Donnelley's conversion gave Connacht the lead.

Blair and replacement fly-half Nick Macleod each missed long-distance penalties, while acting Blues' captain Paul Tito knocked on in the act of touching down after a mazy run by James.

But Macleod finally slotted over a penalty when Treviranus was guilty of slowing the ball down, an offence which earned the winger a yellow card.

Another soon followed, when Fogarty used his hands in a ruck, and Macleod again kicked the goal.

Then disaster struck the visitors. Duffy and Keith Matthews collided as they went for a high kick, spilled the ball and allowed man of the match James to dribble 60 yards to touch down. Macleod's kick hit the post.

Within minutes James was on hand again to finish a neat handling move by crossing for the bonus point try.

The Blues allowed Connacht to apply late pressure which earned a series of penalties.

Martyn Williams was sin-binned but nothing was added to the scoreboard.

The Scorers:

For Cardiff Blues:

Tries: Blair, Williams, James (2)

Cons: Blair (2)

Pens: Macleod (2)

For Connacht:

Try: O'Loughlin

Con: Donnelly

Pens: Donnelly 3

Yellow card: Martyn Williams (Cardiff Blues)

The teams:

Cardiff Blues: 15 Ben Blair, 14 Rhys Williams, 13 Tal Selley, 12 Tom Shanklin, 11 Tom James, 10 Dai Flanagan, 9 Richie Rees, 8 Mark Lewis, 7 Martyn Williams, 6 Scott Morgan, 5 Paul Tito, 4 Deiniol Jones, 3 Scott Roberts, 2 Gareth Williams, 1 Gethin Jenkins.

Replacements: 16 Taufa'ao Filise, 17 Thomas Rhys Thomas, 18 Bradley Davies, 19 Maama Molitika, 20 Jason Spice, 21 Nick Macleod, 22 Gareth Thomas/Jamie Roberts.

Connacht: 15 Gavin Duffy, 14 Ofisa Treviranus, 13 Mel Deane, 12 Aidan Wynne, 11 Keith Mathews, 10 Tim Donnelly, 9 Conor McPhillips, 8 John Muldoon, 7 Johnny O'Connor, 6 Ray Ofisa, 5 David Gannon, 4 Michael Swift, 3 Ronan Loughey, 2 John Fogarty, 1 Brett Wilkinson.

Replacements: 16 Joe Merrigan, 17 Barrie McGovern, 18 Andrew Browne, 19 Michael McCarthy, 20 Conor O'Loughlin, 21 Peter Durcan , 22 Apilate Tuilevuka.

Venue: Cardiff Arms Park

Referee: Peter Fitzgibbon (Ireland)

Touch judges: Gwyn Morris (Wales), David Williams Cald (Wales)

Assessor: Tony Lynch (Wales)

Forthcoming Fixtures
FixtureDetails
All times are local
Aviva Premiership
Friday , November 28
Bath vs HarlequinsBath vs Harlequins Preview
Saturday , November 29
Leicester Tigers vs Wasps15:00
Exeter vs Saracens16:30
Sunday , November 30
London Irish vs Gloucester13:00
London Welsh vs Northampton14:30
Newcastle Falcons vs Sale Sharks15:15
More Aviva Premiership fixtures
International Match
Saturday , November 29
Wales vs South Africa14:30
England vs Australia14:30
More International Match fixtures
Guinness PRO12
Friday , November 28
Munster vs UlsterMunster vs Ulster Preview
Cardiff Blues vs TrevisoCardiff Blues vs Treviso Preview
Saturday , November 29
Zebre vs Edinburgh15:00
Leinster vs Ospreys17:15
Connacht vs Scarlets19:30
Sunday , November 30
Glasgow Warriors vs Dragons16:00
More Guinness PRO12 fixtures
Top 14
Saturday , November 29
Toulon vs Clermont Auvergne14:45
Oyonnax vs Bordeaux-Begles18:30
Lyon vs Montpellier18:30
La Rochelle vs Bayonne18:30
Castres vs Racing Metro Paris18:30
Toulouse vs Grenoble20:45
Sunday , November 30
Stade Francais vs Brive18:00
More Top 14 fixtures
Recent Results
FixtureDetails
All times are local
Aviva Premiership
Sunday , November 23
Saracens 24 - 31 NorthamptonSaracens vs Northampton Report
London Welsh 5 - 26 Leicester TigersLondon Welsh vs Leicester Tigers Report
More Aviva Premiership results
International Match
Georgia 35 - 24 JapanGeorgia vs Japan Report
More International Match results
Guinness PRO12
Treviso 24 - 24 LeinsterTreviso vs Leinster Report
Edinburgh 28 - 13 Cardiff BluesEdinburgh vs Cardiff Blues Report
More Guinness PRO12 results
Aviva Premiership
Saturday , November 22
London Irish 23 - 33 BathLondon Irish vs Bath Report
Exeter 31 - 15 WaspsExeter vs Wasps Report
More Aviva Premiership results
International Match
Italy 6 - 22 South AfricaItaly vs South Africa Report
England 28 - 9 SamoaEngland vs Samoa Report
France 13 - 18 ArgentinaFrance vs Argentina Report
Wales 16 - 34 New ZealandWales vs New Zealand Report
Scotland 37 - 12 TongaScotland vs Tonga Report
Ireland 26 - 23 AustraliaIreland vs Australia Report
Romania 18 - 9 CanadaRomania vs Canada Report
More International Match results
Aviva Premiership
Friday , November 21
Harlequins 12 - 16 Sale SharksHarlequins vs Sale Sharks Report
Newcastle Falcons 20 - 10 GloucesterNewcastle Falcons vs Gloucester Report
More Aviva Premiership results
International Match
Fiji 20 - 14 USAFiji vs USA Report
More International Match results
Guinness PRO12
Dragons 12 - 38 MunsterDragons vs Munster Report
Ulster 25 - 16 OspreysUlster vs Ospreys Report
Connacht 43 - 3 ZebreConnacht vs Zebre Report
Scarlets 19 - 9 Glasgow WarriorsScarlets vs Glasgow Warriors Report
More Guinness PRO12 results
Aviva Premiership
Sunday , November 16
Leicester Tigers 21 - 21 SaracensLeicester Tigers vs Saracens Report
Wasps 71 - 7 London WelshWasps vs London Welsh Report
More Aviva Premiership results
International Match
Ireland 49 - 7 GeorgiaIreland vs Georgia Report
More International Match results
Aviva Premiership
Saturday , November 15
Sale Sharks 36 - 8 London IrishSale Sharks vs London Irish Report
More Aviva Premiership results
Aviva Premiership Table
PosTeamPPts
1Northampton830
2Exeter828
3Bath828
4Saracens825
5Leicester Tigers821