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Last Updated: Saturday, 11 December, 2004, 16:34 GMT
Blues 16-23 Gloucester
Blues centre Tom Shanklin is stopped by Gloucester's Andy Gomarsall
Cardiff Blues (6) 16:
Con: L Thomas
Pens: L Thomas 3
Gloucester (7) 23:
Garvey, Goodridge
Cons: Paul .
Pens: Paul 3
Att: 10,186
Gloucester closed to within a point of Pool Six leaders Stade Francais with victory over the Blues in Cardiff.

England centre Henry Paul kicked three penalties and converted both of his side's tries in a bad-tempered match.

Wing Marcel Garvey struck late in the first half, while full-back Andy Goodridge went over after the break.

Despite Gloucester having three men sin-binned to the Blues' one, the Welsh side had only Craig Morgan's late try to show as they bowed out of Europe.

The result puts Gloucester in a strong position in the pool after Stade Francais lost in Ulster on Saturday.

Opposing kickers Thomas and Paul missed their opening penalty chances, although Thomas struck twice either side of the half-hour mark to put the Blues ahead.

The second penalty came when Gloucester flanker Jamie Forrester was yellow-carded by Irish referee Alan Lewis for blatantly killing possession.

Gloucester had to respond, and Garvey came up trumps, skipping through his opposite number Craig Morgan and touching down wide out.

We caused them problems when we moved the ball
Gloucester coach Dean Ryan
Paul converted from the touchline via a post, and Gloucester trooped off at half-time with a slender 7-6 lead.

The visitors stretched Cardiff's defence in all directions before full-back Goodridge gathered a well-placed kick from fly-half Duncan McRae to touch down.

Paul slotted the conversion for a 14-6 advantage to the English side.

Thomas replied with his third successful penalty after 55 minutes, but Paul was on target with two of his own.

If we play with that intensity the rest of the season, then we'll win a lot more games than we lose
Cardiff coach David Young
Cardiff replacement John Yapp became involved in a fight with two Gloucester forwards, and referee Lewis sin-binned Gloucester's former Cardiff prop Gary Powell.

Another fight four minutes later saw Lewis again reach for the yellow card as he dispatched Gloucester skipper Jake Boer and Cardiff lock Deiniol Jones.

Paul struck his fourth penalty kick to stretch Gloucester into a comfortable 23-9 lead with just six minutes remaining.

Morgan claimed a consolation try at the death for the Blues, converted by Thomas, to earn a bonus point in defeat.

But that mattered little as the winless Cardiff side waved goodbye to their already slim chances in the Heineken Cup.

Blues: R Williams, Tuilagi, S James, Shanklin, C Morgan, L Thomas, R Powell; G Jenkins, R Thomas, M Jones, D Jones, Sidoli, N Thomas, M Williams (capt), Schubert.
Replacements: B Evans, G Williams, Yapp, Budgett, Sowden-Taylor, Dewdney, Macleod.

Gloucester: Goodridge; Garvey, Fanolua, Paul, Bailey; McRae, Gomarsall; Bezuidenhout, Parkes, Powell, Eustace, Cornwell, Forrester, Boer (capt), Balding.
Replacements: Elloway, Wood, Brown, Buxton, Page, Davies, Mauger.

Referee: Alan Lewis (Ireland).


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