Glasgow Warriors do the double over Edinburgh in another derby thriller
Glasgow Warriors completed an inter-city Rainbow Cup double by defeating Edinburgh 31-24 at BT Murrayfield in another derby thriller.
There was no silverware on offer this time, only Rainbow Cup points, but it was a highly satisfactory evening nonetheless for Danny Wilson, the visiting coach.
Having snared the 1872 Cup last week, Glasgow were able to make it back-to-back wins over their old adversaries with another four tries to three victory.
It was the sixth time these sides had met since August but there was nothing stale about the encounter. There were seven tries and two red cards in last week’s match at Scotstoun and the latest renewal was no less thrilling.
Edinburgh looked in the mood early on, particularly Bill Mata and the big Fijian was instrumental in the opening try. Having secured good position deep in the Glasgow half, the ball was moved quickly from Pierre Schoeman to Charlie Savala to Chris Dean and on to Mata, rampaging down the right-wing channel. He took out a number of Glasgow defenders before passing inside to Dean to run in the score. Blair Kinghorn converted.
Ross Thompson reduced the leeway with a penalty, before Kinghorn made it 10-3 to Edinburgh with one of his own.
But Glasgow were starting to get a foothold and two tries in four minutes for the visitors swung the game in their favour. The Warriors showed plenty of patience with a number of thudding pick and gos close to the Edinburgh line and they got their reward when Matt Fagerson wriggled over a pile of bodies to touch down. It was unusual but effective.
Adam Hastings, playing at full-back, was in lively form and a delightful break and sidestep saw him play in Nick Grigg. Schoeman hauled back the centre but the Edinburgh prop was too early with the tackle and was shown a yellow card for his troubles.
Glasgow took advantage, with George Turner taking a quick tap penalty and forcing himself over for the try.
It didn’t look too clever from an Edinburgh point of view and their cause was further hampered by the loss of both their co-captains through injury, with Luke Crosbie and Stuart McInally having to be replaced by Ally Miller and Mike Willemse.
The latter quickly made an impression as Edinburgh managed to turn the tide, forcing his way over for the try.
Kinghorn converted to make it 17-17 but Glasgow quickly reasserted themselves and with the clock showing red, Hastings got the try his first-half performance deserved. Thompson slotted his third conversion to give the visitors a 24-17 advantage at the break.
Glasgow thought they had extended their lead eight minutes into the second half but Rory Darge’s try was disallowed because his team-mate Turner was blocking a potential Edinburgh tackle as Darge plunged over.
Glasgow were not to be denied for long and George Horne’s speed of thought was matched by the quickness of his hands as he dived over from close in for the Warriors’ fourth try, securing the bonus point. Thompson was once again immaculate with the conversion.
Edinburgh gave themselves hope with a try from replacement scrum-half Charlie Shiel after a classy break from his own half by Kinghorn. The full-back converted to reduced Glasgow’s lead to seven points with ten minutes remaining.