Newport Gwent Dragons took away the spoils on Sunday afternoon as they beat strong Irish opponents Ulster Rugby.
The men of Gwent stunned both the supporters and the away team as they took a victory of 26-22 against Guinness PRO12 title hopefuls Ulster.
In what was the Dragons last home game before the big welsh derby, they will now begin their training for the quarterfinal on a high in preparation for the clash at Rodney Parade.
One late change to the Dragons team meant that PRO12 debutant Carl Meyer stepped into the position of fullback and put in an excellent performance as he scored the winning try for the home team.
The welsh region opened up the scoring with a penalty kick from Tom Prydie; he struck the ball well and the Dragons lead 3-0 after 13minutes on the clock. But a fantastic play from the Ulster men and fullback Craig Gilroy saw the visitors sneak the first try of the afternoon. Pienaars conversion attempt was way off the posts and it was directly after this Prydie showed him how its done by slotting over his second penalty of the match, making it 6-5 after 25minutes.
But before the first 40mins had been played, Prydie had missed his chance to move the Dragons further ahead with a miss of a long-range penalty.
Half Time: Dragons 6 – Ulster 5
As the Dragons opened up the scoring it was Pienaar who would have the chance to put his team in the lead with a penalty kick, uncharacteristically he missed and the score remained 6-5, but on his next attempt he made no mistake and nailed the penalty kick to put the visitors back into the lead.
The men of Gwent returned the favour as Dorian Jones, who took over kicking duties in the second half, stepped up to take a penalty kick. The kick was successful which meant that the Dragons edged back into the lead.
Ulster prop Callum Black was yellow carded and the Dragons were rewarded by going back to the corner and took the line out successfully which resulted in a try for the home side. It was replacement hooker Rhys Buckley who went over the line, as he made a quick appearance for the region as captain T. Rhys Thomas was being medically treated. Dorian Jones went on to miss the conversion but made no mistake with the conversion of the Dragons second try from scrum half Jonathan Evans.
The Dragons were now 21-8 up after 60 minutes on the clock, but Ulster weren’t content with that score as Craig Gilroy raced in for his second try of the afternoon. Pienaar slotted this conversion over with ease and put the Dragons back under pressure in the last 10minutes.
The Dragons went on to show how dangerous they can be as replacement Ashton Hewitt offloaded to powerful wing Hallam Amos, who in turn passed the ball to Carl Meyer who flew over the try line, with the conversion missed the scores went to 26-15 with the Dragons sitting pretty. But Ulster replacement Ross Adair had other plans as he went over the white wash and Pienaar converted the scores moved to 26-22 with just second’s left on the clock.
But it was the Dragons who took the win as Ulster settled with a losing bonus point, which puts the welsh region just three points shy of Cardiff Blues.