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SECOND HALF FLOP COSTS EMBRA DEAR

Edinburgh Rugby: 13 (13) Connacht: 14 (6)



Although five points after two matches is by no means a disaster, Friday night's result at Murrayfield was nevertheless a huge disappointment.  After a decent enough performance in the first half, the home side were shut out in the second and could have few complaints at the loss on the run of play. 

However, they were ahead throughout until Connacht seven Faloon's late try on 77 minutes. In that position, you should kill the game and come away with the points.  In Munster last week, the Gunners came close to throwing away a winning position late on; it was second time unlucky this week.  Once again, one has to question the Embramen's discipline.  It is a far cry from high-flying Glasgow, who have just hammered the Blues at the Arms Park and are looking frisky.

Two Heathcote penalties in the opening ten minutes should have given the Gunners a platform on which to build.  But they failed to make anything of their territorial edge and Connacht full back Leader's own brace saw the Galwegians draw level just before the break.  But the home side created the space for Man of the Match Cornell du Preez to cruise over wide out on the left to put the capital club 13-6 up at the oranges.

And it was the home back rower who gave the 3,700 crowd (not bad for a Connacht match) something to shout about, breaking through in a dangerous positio.  But a handling error at the offload saw the chance go a begging.  And Connacht were to narrow the gap shortly afterwards.  Replacement prop WP 'WP' Nel wasn't on the park long before he was carded at scrum time, Leader slotting the three pointer and setting up a tight final quarter.

Faloon was himself carded with 15 mintues left, which should have seen the Gunners home.  And du Preez did come close during the power play, the TMO adjudging he had knocked on while smashing over for a try.  But they were made to pay for their profligacy as the visiting sinner became saint with his late, late try. 

So a pretty underwhelming performance and result.  My own favourite excuse for early season failures such as this is that the Gunners, with only two pre-season matches under their belt, are undercooked.  Given their decent performances up to now, I don't think that'll wash this time.  They just weren't very good.

Embra currently sit seventh in the table with a trip to the table topping Neathswanseaospreys coming up next weekend.  They'll need to do much better than this. 

MAN OF THE MATCH: Cornell du Preez.