Ulster Rugby vs Ospreys


After seeing their hopes for this season written off by the Welsh media following a summer of change at the Liberty Stadium, the Ospreys go into tonight’s game sitting at the top of the Guinness PRO12 table, boasting the only 100% record in any of the professional European leagues.

Their unbeaten start to the season has seen the Welsh region win seven from seven, equaling their best ever opening to a league campaign, and when the win over Connacht on the final day of 2013/14 is tagged on, it equals the longest winning run in the history of the Ospreys, eight on the bounce. On the opening weekend, Nicky Smith, Rhys Webb, Jeff Hassler, Scott Baldwin and Hanno Dirksen all helped themselves to tries against Benetton Treviso at the Liberty Stadium, while the ever reliable Dan Biggar enjoyed a perfect evening with the boot, kicking four conversions and three penalties before handing over to Sam Davies to round off the scoring in a 44-13 win. The following week, a much tighter affair saw the Ospreys edge the first Welsh derby of the season, a 17-15 win at the Dragons with Webb again scoring along with Eli Walker, Biggar adding seven with his boot. Edinburgh then arrived at the Liberty off the back of a win at Thomond Park on the opening weekend and a one-point home defeat to another early season pace-setter, Connacht, but were blown away by the Ospreys. The on-fire Webb set the tone for the afternoon with a brace of tries in

the opening 10 minutes, and by the time the final whistle was blown the Ospreys had added another seven touchdowns on their way to a 62-13 victory. A first trip of the season to Ireland followed, and the Ospreys returned home with the points in the bag after a 19-14 win in Munster, before the narrowest of wins in Italy, 15-14 versus Zebre. Cardiff Blues were sent packing from the Liberty Stadium, defeated 26-15, Webb and Dan Evans scoring the tries, before Connacht were defeated 26-11 in south Wales last time out in the PRO12 to cement the region’s place at the top of the table. However, results to date will have little baring on what happens in Belfast this evening as the Ospreys will feature a much changed line-up, missing 10 players on international duty plus a further dozen currently on the treatment table. The onus at this time of the season is very much on the next generation, with youngsters looking to emulate the likes of Justin Tipuric, Nicky Smith and Scott Baldwin, players who came to attention during international periods before going on to become first team regulars and fully fledged internationals themselves.

//Location Swansea, Wales //Founded 2003 //Ground Liberty Stadium //Capacity 20,570 //Last Game

Connacht (H) 26 - 11 (W) Fri 31st Oct 2014, 19:35 //Next Game Leinster Rugby (A) Sat 29th Nov 14 2014, 17:15 //Recent Form W W W W W

// Coach Steve Tandy // Captain Alun Wyn Jones

Liberty Stadium Landore Swansea Wales Tel

+44 1792 616 500

Tel +448700400004 www.ospreysrugby.com





www. ulster rugby.com


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