|Edinburgh (20) 25|
|Tries: Ritchie, Crosbie, Harrison Pens:Boffelli 2 Cons: Boffelli 2|
|Glasgow Warriors (12) 32|
|Try: Steyn, M Fagerson, Jordan, Horne Pens: Horne 2 Con: Jordan 2, Horne|
Glasgow Warriors beat Edinburgh 32-25 to secure a second United Rugby Championship win over their Scottish rivals and the 1872 Cup.
Emiliano Boffelli kicked the hosts into an eight-point lead at the break after two tries for each team, Jamie Ritchie and Luke Crosbie for Edinburgh and Kyle Steyn and Matt Fagerson for Glasgow.
Tom Jordan’s converted try and 13 points from George Horne put Warriors back in front and ensured them a bonus point, Patrick Harrison replying for Edinburgh.
Warriors, who won 16-10 last Friday, move up a place to fifth in the league.
Edinburgh were so passive for so long in round one at Scotstoun that there was only way for them to go in round two. After three losses in a row in the URC they desperately needed a victory to get themselves back up the table.
It did not start well for them and it finished nightmarishly but in between they had good moments and a handsome lead before their demons swooped and destroyed them.
Having come into this full of fire and brimstone they shipped an early try. Sione Tuipulotu was immense all night, even when Glasgow toiled for the first 40.
The centre gave the visitors good field position with a big line break. Glasgow worked it right, then left, Steyn’s footwork proving too much for a flimsy Edinburgh defence. Jordan’s conversion made it 7-0 and Mike Blair’s team were back in bother.
Their discomfort did not last long. They found an aggression and a control that garnered 17 points without reply. Home-free? One might have thought so.
Glasgow were not at the races in that period. Edinburgh got their first try after Ali Price was charged down while attempting a box kick in his own 22. His team-mates were sluggish in trying to claim the loose ball and when the hosts jumped on it, Ritchie soon ploughed over. Boffelli, inevitably, fired over the conversion.
The Argentine added a penalty to make it 10-7, The gap would have been wider had Sebastian Cancelliere not done wonderfully well to get under Duhan van der Merwe over the try line.
Their pressure did tell in the end, though. Glasgow, as passive in the first half here as they were steely last week, could not defend a driven lineout, Crosbie crashing over with Boffelli landing a beauty of a conversion from out wide. The crowd of more than 25,000 were lapping it up.
There was an occasional sign of life from Glasgow, normally provided by the dump truck Tuipulotu. Another surge, where Edinburgh bounced off him as if he was a human wall, took Glasgow downfield and they stayed there until Fagerson scored from a smart play off a lineout.
Boffelli put over a penalty just before the break. Edinburgh should have been further ahead and, given their history this season, eight points was a precarious advantage.
Blair’s side have had a wretched habit of coughing up decent leads and the ghost of defeats revisited them when Glasgow suddenly got a foothold.
Just before the hour they scored their third try from not far off their third proper attack. It was a pearler. Richie Gray, Sione Vailanu and Cancelliere combined at pace down the right. The wing then put in Jordan for the score, the fly-half then landing the conversion to make it 20-19.
Glasgow now had the bit between their teeth, the momentum completely shifting in their favour. They hit the lead with 13 minutes left with a Horne penalty, given away by Marshall Sykes under his own posts. Sykes was yellow carded for good measure.
Another Edinburgh collapse? Not half. Just as they were gathering their senses having fallen behind, they conceded again. Again it was the outstanding Tuipulotu in the thick of it. His grubber was seized on by Steyn, who gathered, ran on and fed his support runner. Horne took the key pass from Jordan and ran away to score. A ruthless finish from a player who had a seismic influence when he replaced Price.
Edinburgh were stunned. Horne added another penalty to bring his own haul to 13 points in seven spectacular minutes. From there, they never looked like showing the weakness in their game that Edinburgh showed in theirs. Harrison sneaked over on the right to give Edinburgh some comfort.
These are hugely encouraging days for Franco Smith’s side and enormously worrying times for Edinburgh, who are now on a grim run of four URC losses in a row.
Edinburgh head coach Mike Blair: “It was really disappointing to see what happened in the second half. Glasgow got on top from a physicality point of view and we struggled.
“The tightness of the league means that if you do get on a run, you’re back in the play-off positions. We need to keep that belief. This has been a tough period for us – lots of guys have played five games on the bounce. We’ll have to look at freshening things up.”
Glasgow head coach Franco Smith: “It was fantastic. Everybody has chipped in and worked really hard. There’s a lot of belief now. We fought well. The character of the boys – if we play to our strengths, we are a dangerous team.
“[Sione Tuipulotu] was really good. He’s put up his hand for a lot of responsibility this season and he led the charge.”
Edinburgh: Boffelli, Goosen, Bennett, Lang, Van Der Merwe, Kinghorn, Pyrgos, Venter, Cruse, Nel, Skinner, Gilchrist, Ritchie, Crosbie, Mata.
Replacements: Hutchison for Lang (71), Savala for Van Der Merwe (63), Shiel for Pyrgos (69), Schoeman for Venter (51), Harrison for Cruse (61), Williams for Nel (69), Sykes for Skinner (61), Boyle for Mata (57). Sin Bin: Sykes (65).
Glasgow Warriors: Smith, Cancelliere, Tuipulotu, McDowall, Steyn, Jordan, Price, Bhatti, F Brown, Sordoni, Manjezi, Gray, M Fagerson, Vailanu, Dempsey.
Replacements: Miotti for Smith (76), Horne for Price (61), McBeth for Bhatti (61), Turner for F Brown (52), Berghan for Sordoni (52), Bean for Manjezi (41), Du Preez for Gray (61), Neild for Vailanu (76).