Planet Rugby

Laidlaw stars for Edinburgh

03rd May 2013 22:00

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SKY_MOBILE Greig Laidlaw

21 points: Greig Laidlaw

Greig Laidlaw racked up 21 points for Edinburgh as the Scots finished their PRO12 campaign with a 31-24 victory over the Dragons at Murrayfield.

There was nothing but pride to play for at Murrayfield as both sides went into the match having won just six games all season and with no hope of climbing out of the bottom three places in the table.

Nevertheless, there was no lack of tries, incidence or fighting spirit on display as neither team was prepared to take a backwards step in an entertaining end-of-season contest.

The visitors got off to a flying start as Toby Faletau picked the ball up from the back of a scrum and attracted the attention of the defence before offloading to Steffan Jones to cross underneath the posts.

Edinburgh soon got a foothold in the match though and three tries in a little over 10 minutes midway through the first half put them firmly in control. Greig Tonks gathered in Harry Leonard's cross-field kick and touched down before Greig Laidlaw sidestepped his way over the line from short range and Netani Talei showed good footwork and strength to score against the club he is joining next season.

The big number eight's effort was the final try of the first half but it was far from the last action as Sean Cox and Andrew Coombs were sent to the sin bin for a scuffle off the ball and Ross Wardle was also given a yellow card just minutes later for a tip tackle to leave the Dragons down to 13 men.

And, after all that excitement, Laidlaw calmly slotted over two penalties to just one from Tom Prydie to give his side a 25-10 lead at the break.

Another six points from the boot of Laidlaw early in the second half looked to have put the game well and truly beyond the Dragons but the Welshmen sprang into life after the hour mark.

First Dan Lydiate sprinted through a gap to score on his final appearance for the club and moments later Prydie intercepted a Nick de Luca pass and streaked away to touch down.

Those two tries set up an exciting last quarter of an hour but Edinburgh held on to claim victory and ensure that they ended a disappointing season on a positive note and in tenth position in the table.

The scorers:

For Edinburgh:
Tries: Tonks, Laidlaw, Talei
Con: Laidlaw 2
Pen: Laidlaw 4

For Dragons:
Tries: S Jones, Lydiate, Prydie
Con: Prydie 3
Pen: Prydie

Edinburgh: 15 Greig Tonks, 14 Dougie Fife, 13 Nick de Luca, 12 Matt Scott, 11 Tim Visser, 10 Harry Leonard, 9 Greig Laidlaw (c), 8 Netani Talei, 7 Hamish Watson, 6 Stuart McInally, 5 Grant Gilchrist, 4 Sean Cox, 3 Willem Nel, 2 Ross Ford, 1 Allan Jacobsen.
Replacements: 16 Steve Lawrie, 17 Robin Hislop, 18 Geoff Cross, 19 Perry Parker, 20 Richie McIver, 21 Sean Kennedy, 22 Piers Francis, 23 Tom Brown.

Dragons: 15 Dan Evans, 14 Tom Prydie, 13 Ross Wardle, 12 Lewis Robling, 11 Tondi Chavhanga, 10 Steffan Jones, 9 Jonathan Evans, 8 Toby Faletau, 7 Nic Cudd, 6 Dan Lydiate, 5 Robert Sidoli, 4 Andrew Coombs (c), 3 Nathan Buck, 2 Hugh Gustafson, 1 Aaron Coundley.
Replacements: 16 Sam Parry, 17 Owen Evans, 18 Tim Ryan, 19 Adam Jones, 20 Ieuan Jones, 21 Wayne Evans, 22 Patrick Leach, 23 Hallam Amos.

Referee: Marius Mitrea
Assistant Referees: Andy Macpherson, David Changleng
TMO: Paul Minto

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