Glasgow In Sight Of Quarter-Final Place

Glasgow 47, Bridgend 11Two tries by Alan Bulloch helped Glasgow on the way to a satisfying and satisfactory victory over Bridgend at Hughenden this evening. Glenn Metcalfe, Gordon Simpson, and Graeme Beveridge, too, each notched a try as Glasgow also picked up a Celtic League bonus point on a calm, mild evening, ideal conditions for rugby.It was Glasgow's fourth straight win in their league section. They now lead by two points from Connacht, who won 18-12 against Newport in Galway tonight, and Glasgow's 100% record ensures that they are close to qualifying for the competition's last eight for the second successive year. Indeed, their position of strength at the top of the table puts them well within sight of a home quarter-final.Adding to the five tries, Tommy Hayes had an excellent evening with the boot, kicking nine goals from 10 attempts. His tally was 22 points, one more than his previous best in the Celtic League, most recently his 21 against Newport last week. Tonight's haul was made up of five conversions and four penalty goals, and his only miss was from extreme range, almost at halfway just before the interval, when Glasgow were already 23-6 up. Craig Warlow's two first-half penalty goals were Bridgend only scores until the match was all but over.Metcalfe scored the first try after barely three minutes" play, and after the game Kiwi Searancke, Glasgow's head coach, remarked on how pleasing it was 'to win from the front." However, that view was tempered by a realistic observation: "We"ve won four in a row, but we haven't won anything yet."Glasgow, however, have laid down a marker. They have become the team to beat in their league pool.Tonight they emphasised that place in the game by playing rugby with such pace, power, and patience that it almost sucked the oxygen of survival out of the opposition. When Bridgend had possession they rarely had space to exploit it such was the aggression of the home defence. Conversely, Calvin Howarth, Hayes, and Alan Bulloch were willing to have more than the occasional tilt to test the opposition, and the speed of the support, with Andrew Wilson having a notable first full game as open-side flanker, allowed Glasgow to have long, controlled series of recycling.No example was better than the way the first try was made. Andy Hall laid the foundations with a lineout take on the right, and no fewer than seven phases followed before Metcalfe was driven over by the forwards on the other flank.Craig Warlow and Hayes swapped penalty goals. That was 10-3 to Glasgow after 14 minutes, and when Metcalfe chased through to on Howarth's long, high punt the left wing's fine example of aggressive defence purchased another penalty goal. A third followed for the dead-eyed Hayes, and soon afterwards Alan Bulloch poached a try, as he had done in the win at Cardiff three weeks. This time he had more to do after his smash and grab 35 metres out, but he fired after-burners to escape and dive over between the posts.At half-time Glasgow made a double change, one forced by a knee knock that had hampered Andy Nicol's passing. Beveridge took over as scrum half and Jason White as captain, the latter replacing Nathan Ross.Hayes stretched the lead to 26-6 early in the second half with his fourth penalty goal, but it was then that Glasgow slightly lapsed. It seemed that they would not benefit from numerical advantage, with Gareth Williams in the sin-bin, but, belatedly, just before the hooker's return, they profited with a try in 56 minutes. Stuart Moffat laid the foundations for that scoring assault by running the ball back from a Bridgend kick, Andy Hall made a substantial dent, Metcalfe carried on, and a series of percussion hammerings on the line eventually broke the resistance for Simpson to score.Eight minutes later Alan Bulloch's second try procured the bonus point. Again it was a run-back by Moffat that opened the door for Howarth to put the centre in.Moffat was involved in the fifth try, too, this time in liaison with Metcalfe before Beveridge danced in from 10 metres out. Hayes kicked his fifth conversion - well out on the left, his last goal was the best of the nine.Only then, a minute into injury time, did Bridgend notched their solitary try, Williams driven over at almost the same spot where Metcalfe had begun the evening's scoring for Glasgow.Glasgow - Stuart Moffat; Jon Steel, Alan Bulloch, Tommy Hayes, Glenn Metcalfe; Calvin Howarth, Andy Nicol (captain); David Hilton, Gordon Bulloch, Lee Harrison, Nathan Ross, Andy Hall, Gordon Simpson, Andrew Wilson, Jon Petrie. Substitutes - Graeme Beveridge for Nicol (half-time), Jason White for Ross (half-time), Andy Henderson for Howarth (64 minutes), Ben Daly for Gordon Bulloch (72), Rory McKay for Simpson (72).Tries, Alan Bulloch (2), Beveridge, Metcalfe, Simpson; conversions, Hayes (5); penalty goals, Hayes (4).Bridgend - Anthony Carter; Craig Richards, Gareth Thomas, Daffyd James (captain), Richard Mustoe; Craig Warlow, Huw Harries; Christian Loader, Gareth Williams, Chris Horsman, Deiniol Jones, Richard Bryan, Jamie Ringer, Shawn van Rensberg. Substitutes - Ben Phillips for Ringer (48-56), Mike Powell for Jones (half-time), Sililo Martens for Harries (65), Phil Booth for Loader (65), John Thiel for Horsman (65), Phillips for Ringer (67).Try, Williams; penalty goals, Warlow (2). Yellow cards - Williams (46), Powell (79).Referee - Donal Courtney (Ireland).Glasgow 47, Bridgend 11Two tries by Alan Bulloch helped Glasgow on the way to a satisfying and satisfactory victory over Bridgend at Hughenden this evening. Glenn Metcalfe, Gordon Simpson, and Graeme Beveridge, too, each notched a try as Glasgow also picked up a Celtic League bonus point on a calm, mild evening, ideal conditions for rugby.It was Glasgow's fourth straight win in their league section. They now lead by two points from Connacht, who won 18-12 against Newport in Galway tonight, and Glasgow's 100% record ensures that they are close to qualifying for the competition's last eight for the second successive year. Indeed, their position of strength at the top of the table puts them well within sight of a home quarter-final.Adding to the five tries, Tommy Hayes had an excellent evening with the boot, kicking nine goals from 10 attempts. His tally was 22 points, one more than his previous best in the Celtic League, most recently his 21 against Newport last week. Tonight's haul was made up of five conversions and four penalty goals, and his only miss was from extreme range, almost at halfway just before the interval, when Glasgow were already 23-6 up. Craig Warlow's two first-half penalty goals were Bridgend only scores until the match was all but over.Metcalfe scored the first try after barely three minutes" play, and after the game Kiwi Searancke, Glasgow's head coach, remarked on how pleasing it was 'to win from the front." However, that view was tempered by a realistic observation: "We"ve won four in a row, but we haven't won anything yet."Glasgow, however, have laid down a marker. They have become the team to beat in their league pool.Tonight they emphasised that place in the game by playing rugby with such pace, power, and patience that it almost sucked the oxygen of survival out of the opposition. When Bridgend had possession they rarely had space to exploit it such was the aggression of the home defence. Conversely, Calvin Howarth, Hayes, and Alan Bulloch were willing to have more than the occasional tilt to test the opposition, and the speed of the support, with Andrew Wilson having a notable first full game as open-side flanker, allowed Glasgow to have long, controlled series of recycling.No example was better than the way the first try was made. Andy Hall laid the foundations with a lineout take on the right, and no fewer than seven phases followed before Metcalfe was driven over by the forwards on the other flank.Craig Warlow and Hayes swapped penalty goals. That was 10-3 to Glasgow after 14 minutes, and when Metcalfe chased through to on Howarth's long, high punt the left wing's fine example of aggressive defence purchased another penalty goal. A third followed for the dead-eyed Hayes, and soon afterwards Alan Bulloch poached a try, as he had done in the win at Cardiff three weeks. This time he had more to do after his smash and grab 35 metres out, but he fired after-burners to escape and dive over between the posts.At half-time Glasgow made a double change, one forced by a knee knock that had hampered Andy Nicol's passing. Beveridge took over as scrum half and Jason White as captain, the latter replacing Nathan Ross.Hayes stretched the lead to 26-6 early in the second half with his fourth penalty goal, but it was then that Glasgow slightly lapsed. It seemed that they would not benefit from numerical advantage, with Gareth Williams in the sin-bin, but, belatedly, just before the hooker's return, they profited with a try in 56 minutes. Stuart Moffat laid the foundations for that scoring assault by running the ball back from a Bridgend kick, Andy Hall made a substantial dent, Metcalfe carried on, and a series of percussion hammerings on the line eventually broke the resistance for Simpson to score.Eight minutes later Alan Bulloch's second try procured the bonus point. Again it was a run-back by Moffat that opened the door for Howarth to put the centre in.Moffat was involved in the fifth try, too, this time in liaison with Metcalfe before Beveridge danced in from 10 metres out. Hayes kicked his fifth conversion - well out on the left, his last goal was the best of the nine.Only then, a minute into injury time, did Bridgend notched their solitary try, Williams driven over at almost the same spot where Metcalfe had begun the evening's scoring for Glasgow.Glasgow - Stuart Moffat; Jon Steel, Alan Bulloch, Tommy Hayes, Glenn Metcalfe; Calvin Howarth, Andy Nicol (captain); David Hilton, Gordon Bulloch, Lee Harrison, Nathan Ross, Andy Hall, Gordon Simpson, Andrew Wilson, Jon Petrie. Substitutes - Graeme Beveridge for Nicol (half-time), Jason White for Ross (half-time), Andy Henderson for Howarth (64 minutes), Ben Daly for Gordon Bulloch (72), Rory McKay for Simpson (72).Tries, Alan Bulloch (2), Beveridge, Metcalfe, Simpson; conversions, Hayes (5); penalty goals, Hayes (4).Bridgend - Anthony Carter; Craig Richards, Gareth Thomas, Daffyd James (captain), Richard Mustoe; Craig Warlow, Huw Harries; Christian Loader, Gareth Williams, Chris Horsman, Deiniol Jones, Richard Bryan, Jamie Ringer, Shawn van Rensberg. Substitutes - Ben Phillips for Ringer (48-56), Mike Powell for Jones (half-time), Sililo Martens for Harries (65), Phil Booth for Loader (65), John Thiel for Horsman (65), Phillips for Ringer (67).Try, Williams; penalty goals, Warlow (2). Yellow cards - Williams (46), Powell (79).Referee - Donal Courtney (Ireland).