Ulster get bonus point victory over Aironi

Ulster secured a 31-13 bonus point victory over Aironi in Pool 4 of the Heineken Cup at Ravenhill on Friday evening.


The Belfast-based side, who famously lifted European rugby’s prize back in 1999, kept themselves in the hunt for a quarter-finals spot in this tournament with this win over the Italian new boys.


Ulster now will watch with interest the other Pool clash between Clermont Auvergne, who they beat at Ravenhill, and Leicester, who they lost to in Welford Road, in France on Sunday afternoon.


Stephen Ferris, Adam D’arcy, Andrew Trimble, Paul Marshall and Paddy Jackson all crossed for tries for the home side but they found it tough going against their fellow Pro12 side.


Lions flanker Ferris started the ball rolling with a try in the corner to get his side on the scoreboard and fly-half Ian Humphreys landed the difficult touchline conversion to put the home side 7-0 midway through the first half.


The Italian side replied with a well taken penalty by outside half Tito Tebaldi but he and Humphreys and both missed penalties before Aironi found themselves down to 14-men, when full-back Giiuilo Toniolatti was shown the yellow card.


The home side took full advantage of their extra man when full-back D’arcy crossed for Ulster’s second try just before half-time to stretch their lead to 12-3 at the break.


Ireland wing Trimble crossed for Belfast’s third try straight after half-time and Ulster finally got the much-needed bonus point win when replacement scrum-half Marshall crossed for a fourth try midway through the second half.


Replacement Jackson rubbed salt in the Italian side’s wounds with Ulster’s fifth try but Aironi did manage a consolation try by replacement hooker Tommaso D’Apice in the dying moments of the contest.


Final Score Ulster 31 (12) Aironi 13 (3)


Scorers


Ulster
Tries: Ferris, D’Arcy, Trimble, Marshall, Jackson
Conversions: Humphreys 3


Aironi
Tries: D’Apice
Conversion: Olivier
Penalties: Tebaldi 2


Referee: Andrew Small (England)


Ulster Rugby: A D’Arcy; A Trimble, D Cave, N Spence, C Gilroy; I Humphreys, R Pienaar; P McAllister, R Best, J Afoa, J Muller [capt], D Tuohy, S Ferris, C Henry, P Wannenburg


Replacements: A Kyriacou, T Court, A Macklin, L Stevenson, R Diack, P Marshall, P Jackson, S Terblanche


Aironi Rugby: G Toniolatti ; S Sinoti, R Quartaroli, G Pizarro, M Pratichetti; T Tebaldi, T Keats; S Perugini, F Ongaro, L Romano, C del Fava, M Bortolami [capt], N Cattina, S Favaro, J Sole


Replacements: T D’Apice , A de Marchi, L Redolfini, G Biagi, F Ferrarini, G Bronzini, N Olivier, G Pavan


With thanks to ERCRugby.

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