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Friday, 11 January, 2002, 19:50 GMT
Ulster crush Treviso
Action from Friday night's game between Ulster and Treviso at Ravenhill
David Humphreys goes on the offensive against Treviso

Ulster 59-3 Treviso

Ulster must wait until Saturday to see if they can make it an Irish treble in the quarter-finals of the Heineken Cup.

An easy victory over Treviso leaves Alan Solomons' side with eight points from their six pool matches and in with a chance of making the quarter-finals.

Although Ulster did improve their try-count, they still hope that holders Leicester win at Llanelli and Cardiff lose at Northampton if they are to play any further part in the tournament.

At least Ulster improved their chances by running in eight tries against a woeful Treviso side who offered little resistance after holding Ulster in the first period.

Ulster skipper Andy Ward in action against Treviso
Andy Ward attacks against Treviso

Ulster dominated possession from the start, running the ball from everywhere and opting to kick penalties to the corner in a desperate pursuit of tries.

But the majority of the first half proved a frustrating experience for the 1999 champions, with the attacks hampered by over-eagerness and persistent offside offences by the Treviso backline.

Indeed Treviso, completely against the run of play, took the lead with a penalty by Simon Mason, a veteran of Ulster's Cup-winning side.

But David Humphreys calmed the home side's nerves with three penalties and when Mason was sent to the sin bin just before the break, Ulster struck with tries by Gary Longwell and Neil Doak.

Solo effort

The second half started in splendid style for Ulster, with Tyrone Howe touching down within two minutes and the stage was set for the floodgates to open.

Man-of-the-match Doak, who must have imnpressed watching Irish coach Eddie O'Sullivan danced his way over for a great solo effort.

Then the move of the match saw Howe come off his wing to run in his second try, which Wallace converted from the touchline.

Desperate Italian defence conceded a penalty try in the 55th minute from an Ulster driving maul and then Adam Larkin, a substitute for Sheldon Coulter, scored with his first touch.

Treviso were again reduced to 14 men when replacement Carlo Checchinato was sent to the sin bin in the 66th minute.

But it was not until injury-time that Ulster were able to score again, with a delighted Ryan Constable grabbing his second.

Leinster have already qualified for the quarter-finals while Munster are expected to claim their place on Saturday.


Ulster: Tries: Howe (2), Doak (2), Longwell, Constable, Larkin, penalty try; Pens: Humphreys (3); Cons: Humphreys, Wallace (4).

Treviso: Pens: Mason.

Yellow cards: Mason, Checcinato.

Att: 12,000.


Ulster: P Wallace; S Coulter; R Constable, J Bell, T Howe; D Humphreys, N Doak; J Fitzpatrick, P Shields, S Best, P Johns, G Longwell, T McWhirter, A Ward, capt, N McMillan.

Replacements: A Larkin for Coulter (58), J Davidson for Johns (45), M Crick for Shields (69).

Benetton Treviso: S Mason; M Perziano; M Dallan, S Magorian, N Mazzucato; F Mazzariol, M Mazzatini; P Ribbens, A Moscardi, capt, F Porperzi, W Visser, A Gritti, F Ongaro, M Bergamasco, D Edwards.

Replacements: P Richards for Mazzantini (73), C Checchinato for Edwards (40), G Preo for Dallan (40), De Meneghi for Porperzi (58), G Faliva for Ribbens (58), F Cassagrande for Mazzucato (43), S Garozzo for Visser (60).

Referee: N Whitehouse (Wales).

 WATCH/LISTEN
 ON THIS STORY
Ulster's David Humphries
"It was one of those enjoyable nights"
Ulster skipper Andy Ward
"Everyone stuck to their guns"
Ulster's Neil Doak
"We're probably the best supported team in Europe"
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