Cardiff Blues 10 - 6 London Irish

Match info: Anglo-Welsh Cup at Cardiff Arms Park

Date: 01/02/2013 KO: 19:30 Att: 5,938

Home team/scorers Scores Away team/scorers

Cardiff Blues

TriesEvans (33)ConversionsPatchell (33)PenaltiesPatchell (69)


London Irish

PenaltiesHomer (20, 55)

FT (ht: 7-3)

  • Last Updated: February 1 2013, 22:42 GMT

London Irish must rely on Worcester beating Saracens on Saturday if they are to reach the semi-finals of the LV= Cup after the Blues upset their momentum at a damp Arms Park.

Alex Walker gets a pass away for the Blues
Alex Walker gets a pass away for the Blues

And it was largely down to their own mistakes that the visitors lost.

Irish never looked like a team that had won all five games in January, even if a muddy pitch and gusting wind contributed to an error-strewn performance.

The visitors arrived in Wales with qualification in their own hands, leading their pool by a point from Saracens, while the Blues, although theoretically capable of reaching the last four, were realistically playing for pride only.

With nine players away with the senior Wales squad and a handful of others in international under-20 action, the Blues were further weakened after six minutes when lock Cory Hill limped off, flanker Michael Paterson having to move forward in the pack.

But the New Zealander was still a force in the loose, breaking downfield, aided by Rhys Patchell, before a move broke down in the Irish 22.

The Reading-based side broke the deadlock, prolific full-back Tom Homer slotting over a penalty from straight in front midway through the first half.

Promising Blues fly-half Patchell, released from national age-group duty, darted down the right, but was beaten to his kick ahead by Homer, who hacked the ball into touch five yards from his goal-line.

The Blues kept up the pressure and the Irish defence eventually conceded a penalty, only for Patchell to push it wide.

But the home side were soon on the scoreboard. Homer fumbled a Patchell grubber on his own line and Blues acting captain Gavin Evans pounced on the loose ball to touch down. Patchell converted.

Homer's bad luck continued when he saw a 40-yard penalty rebound from a post shortly before the interval.

The Blues emerged in clean jerseys, but were soon getting them dirty in defence as the visitors showed a new urgency, epitomised by a scything break from centre Guy Armitage, only for the attack to end tamely with a knock-on.

The Welsh region, struggling at scrum time, brought on new props, but they were promptly penalised at the next set-piece and Homer cut the deficit to a single point.

It sparked the Blues into life, however, with try-scorer Evans and scrum-half Alex Walker leading an attack which ended in a penalty, which Patchell missed.

The number 10 made up for it shortly afterwards when he was offered a slightly easier chance.

With a try enough to make a semi-final spot almost certain, the visitors swarmed into the Blues 22 and turned down a kickable penalty to go for the lineout, only to spill the ball as they tried to force their way over.