Updated: Apr 2, 2021
The Ospreys welcomed Glasgow Warriors to the Liberty Stadium for the latest Pro14 match in wet conditions.
The Ospreys looked like they were still in the changing room in the opening minutes when after an exchange of box kicks, the Warriors were able to easily break through a paper-thin Ospreys defence. The ball from the ruck was quick and with numbers outside, the ball was quickly and easily passed past Luke Morgan for the opening try which went unconverted to give Glasgow a 0-5 lead after 3 minutes.
The Ospreys got themselves back in the game when they were awarded a penalty after the kick-off. Myler slotted the kick to make it 3-5 after almost 7 minutes.
Last week’s errors at the lineout were obviously worked on in training but a quickly thrown front ball by Lake allowed the Glasgow forwards to win a penalty for holding on. This was kicked to the corner and after several phases, the Warriors scored their second try to make the score 3-10. The try was converted and now the score was 3-12 after 17 minutes.
The teams swapped turnovers and penalties as neither side could gain the ascendancy as both defences held strong, but it was the Ospreys who were the next to almost score. A Lake overthrow at the lineout was recovered by the Warriors scrum half who tried to box kick. He was charged down by Adam Beard who regathered the ball before exchanging passes with Lake as the big Osprey rampaged down the touch line. Beard was stopped by a good cover tackle, but the Ospreys could not control the ball at the ruck and allowed a Warriors player to hack the ball clear. Mat Protheroe took the ball on and made good metres but was in two minds to pass or run and ended up knocking the ball on as he was tackled.
The last chance of the first half would also go to the Ospreys who had visibly upped the tempo and intensity of their play. From an Ospreys lineout, Ruben Morgan-Williams made a clear break before he offloaded to the supporting Kieran Williams who almost scored but the ref adjudged him to be held up giving the Ospreys a 5m scrum. The scrum went down with the Ospreys going forward but Morgan-Williams was too quick from the base of the scrum and forced his way over the line for a well-deserved try that Myler converted to make it 10-12 on 36 minutes. Half time came and went.
The second half kicked off with heavy rain falling at the Liberty and the Ospreys were awarded a penalty almost straight away as Glasgow were offside. Myler slotted the kick to make it 13-12.
The next scoring chance went to Glasgow after Lake was somewhat harshly penalised for not showing a clear release. The kick was successful, and Glasgow were back in the lead at 13-15. Tom Botha and Tian Thomas-Wheeler came on for Fia and the largely anonymous Scott Williams.
The Ospreys attacked and could well have scored but an early off the ball tackle went unpunished, allowing the Warriors to clear. Dan Evans then intercepted a Glasgow pass and raced away down the line, but his pass could not find any supporting Ospreys. The Ospreys retained possession, Thomas-Wheeler chipped through the oncoming Glasgow defence and the Ospreys won a lineout. Lydiate caught the ball and the Ospreys began to maul their way towards the Glasgow try line. Williams and Protheroe added their shoulder to the pack but the maul came down short of the line. However, Morgan-Williams was quick to pass to Williams who crashed over in the corner for the Ospreys second try and Myler converted to make it 20-15 on 57 minutes.
The next ten minutes were largely played between the two 22s as neither side could gain any major ground or break open the other team’s defence. From a Warriors box kick, Morgan made almost 40 metres and then the Ospreys were awarded a penalty that Myler slotted between the posts to make the score 23-15 on 67 minutes.
Glasgow were the next team to attack but Lake finally won a penalty as the Warriors player held on at the breakdown. The resulting penalty was kicked to touch but Lake overthrew Beard allowing the Warriors to break and almost score. They were given repeated advantages as the Ospreys were caught offside before finally crossing the line only to be held up. From the resulting scrum, the Warriors went through the phases and again repeatedly caught Ospreys players offside. The referee’s patience ran out and he showed a yellow card to Beard meaning the Ospreys would finish the game with 14 men and the Warriors were awarded another penalty. Unusually, they elected to tap and go but a superb hit from Cracknell forced a knock on and the Ospreys were able to clear from the resulting scrum. Cracknell and Lydiate were subbed off for Will Griffiths and Ifan Phillips, respectively.
Despite their best efforts the Glasgow Warriors were unable to make their extra man count and even ended the game in the ascendancy after winning successive penalties. The ever reliable Myler tapped the last penalty to himself and slammed the ball into touch to bring about the final whistle.
The start of the game was poor from the Ospreys who had seemed like their were still in the changing rooms but some stern words from captain Lydiate seemed to do the trick and the whole team upped their performance levels and thoroughly deserved their win. TV awarded the Player of the Game to Adam Beard but personally I thought that Myler’s kicking was the difference and he was my Player of the Game.