Date: Tuesday, 6 November, 2018
Venue: Arms Park, Cardiff
by Callum Ellis
SEVEN tries from Cardiff Blues saw them overcome Uruguay with a 45-21 victory in the inaugural Syft International Challenge match.
Alun Lawrence, Max Llewellyn, Ethan Lewis, Ioan Davies, Harri Millard and Rhys Gill were all on target for the Blues as the visitors continued their preparation for next year’s World Cup.
Despite a dominant scoreline on a wet evening in the Welsh capital, it was Uruguay who took an early lead through Ignacio Dotti. The lock bundled over to open the scoring and Federico Favaro kicked over the resulting conversion to increase Uruguay’s advantage.
But the Blues did not let the early setback knock them and hit back through Lawrence. He burst through Uruguay’s defensive line and evaded four challenges to get the home side off the mark. While Matthew Morgan tapped home the conversion to draw them level.
John Mulvihill’s men continued to press and managed to get their second try eight minutes later. Lewis Jones was at the centre of the move and he combined with the try scorer Lawrence, Rhys Carre and Liam Belcher. Llewellyn eventually run over in the corner to put the Blues ahead but Morgan saw his conversion sail wide.
Blues winger Aled Summerhill was sent to the sin-bin with 10 minutes remaining before the interval. He was adjudged to have denied the South Americans from a try scoring opportunity with a deliberate knock-on.
The hosts increased their advantage with another try early into the second half. Substitute Lewis bundled over to add additional points to his side’s tally, but Morgan again missed the target with his conversion.
Fly-half Rodrigo Silva was sent to the sin-bin by referee Adam Jones shortly after. He was given his marching orders following an off-the-ball tackle and the hosts made the extra man count.
A cross-field kick from captain Fish, on his 100th appearance for the club, was taken well by debutant Ioan Davies and he escaped two challenges before running over to take the score to 22-7.
After a neat piece of footwork from Millard, he added another try try for the Blues just before the hour-mark. While Morgan was on target with both conversions.
But the visitors responded with two tries in quick succession from substitutes Felipe Berchesi and Facundo Gattas. Fly-half Berchesi stepped up and notched over both of the conversions.
There was still time for the hosts to add 14 points before the final whistle. Fish found Gill with an offload and he run over to grab his first try for the Blues. Morgan made easy work of the conversion before the hosts concluded the evening with a penalty try.