There were man-of-the-match performances from Ian Humphreys, Fergus McFadden and Nick Williams as three of the provinces picked up wins in round 4 of the Magners League. Munster, Leinster and Ulster are now in the top four of the table, behind leaders Edinburgh.
A crowd of almost 6,000 turned up at Murrayfield on Saturday to watch the current leaders of the Magners League, Edinburgh, take on reigning European champions Leinster.
In a tight game with a dramatic finish, Edinburgh just lost out to their visitors – 21-19 – a result that also put an end to their attempt to set an all-time record for successive Magners League victories. However, the Scots still remain top of the table.
Defending Magners League champions Munster moved up into second place courtesy of a bonus point win over the Newport Gwent Dragons on Sunday, number 8 Nick Williams scoring a hat-trick in the 27-3 victory.
Cardiff Blues recorded their first victory of the 2009/10 campaign at Cardiff City Stadium, however two late tries by their opponents, the Scarlets, led to a tense finish in the all-Welsh derby.
The other derby game in Ireland saw Ulster pull out a 30-6 win over hosts Connacht, a win that moves the Ulstermen up to fourth in the table.
Elsewhere, the Ospreys turned a 10-point half-time point deficit into a 10-point winning margin, scoring 20 unanswered points in the second half of their game against Glasgow Warriors at Firhill Arena.
The win, which included an excellent try from Tommy Bowe, lifts the Ospreys above Glasgow in the table, but the 11 points from the boot of Dan Parks has pulled him even closer to the magical 1000 Magners League points mark. He now stands on 943 points.
2009/10 MAGNERS LEAGUE – AFTER ROUND 4:
TOP TRY SCORERS –
3 – Fionn Carr (Connacht), Nick Williams (Munster)
2 – Aled Brew (Newport Gwent Dragons), Ashley Smith (Newport Gwent Dragons), Ben Cairns (Edinburgh), Jerry Collins (Ospreys), Simon Danielli (Ulster), Denis Hurley (Munster), Alan MacDonald (Edinburgh), Mark Robertson (Edinburgh), Chris Paterson (Edinburgh), Tim Visser (Edinburgh), Nikki Walker (Ospreys)
TOP POINTS SCORERS –
61 – Chris Paterson (Edinburgh) (2 tries, 12 conversions and 9 penalty goals)
54 – Dan Parks (Glasgow Warriors) (3 conversions, 14 penalty goals and 2 drop goals)
49 – Ben Blair (Cardiff Blues) (1 try, 4 conversions and 12 penalty goals)
41 – Jonathan Sexton (Leinster) (1 conversion, 12 penalty goals and 1 drop goal)
32 – Ian Keatley (Connacht) (1 conversion and 10 penalty goals)
30 – Jeremy Manning (Munster) (3 conversions and 8 penalty goals)
29 – Ian Humphreys (Ulster) (1 try, 3 conversions and 6 penalty goals)
27 – Dan Biggar (Ospreys) (3 conversions, 5 penalty goals and 2 drop goals), James Arlidge (Newport Gwent Dragons) (1 try, 2 conversions, 5 penalty goals and 1 drop goal)
21 – Rhys Priestland (Scarlets) (3 conversions and 5 penalty goals)
BEST PLACE-KICKERS –
100% – Tomas O’Leary (Munster) (2 successful kicks from 2 attempts)
87.5% – Chris Paterson (Edinburgh) 21/24)
84.21% – Ben Blair (Cardiff Blues) (16/19)
81.25% – Jonathan Sexton (Leinster) (13/16)
77.27% – Dan Parks (Glasgow Warriors) (17/22)
75% – Fergus McFadden (Leinster) (6/8), Jason Tovey (Newport Gwent Dragons) (3/4)
72.73% – Dan Biggar (Ospreys) (8/11)
61.11% – Ian Keatley (Connacht) (11/18), Jeremy Manning (Munster) (11/18)
60% – Daniel Evans (Scarlets) (3/5)
53.33% – Rhys Priestland (Scarlets) (8/15)
RESULTS ROUND-UP –
Friday, September 25, 2009 at the Sportsground
Connacht (6) 6: Ian Keatley(2P)
Ulster (7) 30: Timoci Nagusa(T), BJ Botha(T), Darren Cave(T), Ian Humphreys(T/2C/2P)
Friday, September 25, 2009 at Firhill Arena
Glasgow Warriors (16) 16: Dan Parks(C/D/2P), Dave McCall(T)
Ospreys (6) 26: Dan Biggar(2C/D/3P), Tommy Bowe(T), Nikki Walker(T)
Saturday, September 26, 2009 at Murrayfield
Edinburgh (6) 19: Ben Cairns(T), Chris Paterson(C/4P)
Leinster (6) 21: Fergus McFadden(6P), Jonathan Sexton(D)
Saturday, September 26, 2009 at Cardiff City Stadium
Cardiff Blues (13) 19: Ben Blair(C/4P), Paul Tito(T)
Scarlets (3) 15: Jonathan Davies(T), David Lyons(T), Daniel Evans(C/P)
Sunday, September 27, 2009 at Musgrave Park
Munster (3) 27: Doug Howlett(T), Ronan O’Gara(P), Nick Williams(3T), Tomas O’Leary(2C)
Newport Gwent Dragons (3) 3: James Arlidge(P)