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Edinburgh 27-31 Northampton Saints

Edinburgh (24) 27
Tries: Jacobsen, Talei, Cairns. Con: Paterson 3. Pens: Paterson 2.
Northampton (21) 31
Tries: Hartley, Downey, Diggin. Cons: Myler 2. Pen: Myler 4.

By Andy Campbell

Dylan Hartley, David Blair and Roger Wilson
David Blair is tackled by Dylan Hartley and Roger Wilson

Northampton Saints moved top of Heineken Cup Pool One after overcoming Edinburgh at Murrayfield.

The hosts impressed in the first half and crossed the line three times through Allan Jacobsen, Netani Talei and Ben Cairns.

But tries by Dylan Hartley and James Downey kept the visitors in touch at the interval.

And Paul Diggin's touchdown and Stephen Myler's accurate kicking ensured victory for Saints.

Edinburgh, who gained a bonus point, remain bottom of the section having lost both of their opening pool fixtures while Castres and Cardiff Blues have each won once and lost once.

An early burst forward by Geoff Cross caused Northampton to infringe and Paterson converted his first penalty attempt.

Northampton scrum-half Lee Dickson found a gap and cantered towards the Edinburgh 22 but a knock-on resulted in a home scrum and the danger was mopped up.

But a well-worked rolling maul from a line-out allowed visiting captain Dylan Hartley to register the game's first try and Stephen Myler added the conversion.

It was now Edinburgh's turn to respond and the Blair brothers, David and Mike, combined to create the chance for prop Allan Jacobsen to cross the line, Paterson adding the extras.

Myler's penalty levelled matters after Edinburgh captain Roddy Grant had been caught offside.

James King, who was making his first start for the hosts, superbly tackled Jon Clarke and the turnover ball started the counter-attack that ended with Edinburgh's second try.

The Blair brothers once again played a crucial role in the move and Netani Talei, who was a late replacement for Ross Rennie, touched down in the corner and Paterson continued his 100% record with the boot.

Myler's penalty right in front of the posts immediately reduced Northampton's arrears but more superb offloading gave Edinburgh their third try, Ben Cairns slipping through to set up an easy conversion for Paterson.

Northampton hit back again with another Myler penalty and Roger Wilson then found space behind the Edinburgh defence to allow Dickson and Phil Dowson to move the ball for Downey to claim his try. However, Myler's angled kick missed the posts.

Paterson stretched Edinburgh's lead with a penalty shortly after the interval and Northampton thought they had hit back straight when Chris Ashton went over.

However, the TMO ruled that the full-back had dropped the ball and Saints had to settle for a scrum, from which Talei gave Northampton another chance to score.

Dowson capitalised on Talei's loose pass and, several phases later, Ashton released Paul Diggin to run in Northampton's third try.

Myler's conversion put the visitors in front and a four-point lead was opened up when the fly-half added another penalty.

Both sides were now within one try of a bonus point victory but Edinburgh's need to get any kind of win made their play hesitant and Northampton stood firm in the closing stages.


Edinburgh: Paterson, Thompson, Cairns, King, Visser, D. Blair, M. Blair, Jacobsen, Ford, G. Cross, MacLeod, MacKenzie, MacDonald, Talei, Grant.

Replacements: Laidlaw for M. Blair (70), Traynor for Jacobsen (65), Kelly for Ford (65), Young for G. Cross (60), Hamilton for MacLeod (60). Not Used: Grove, Benton, Bishop.

Northampton: Tonks, Ashton, Clarke, Downey, Diggin, Myler, Dickson, Tonga'uiha, Hartley, Mujati, Lawes, Day, Dowson, Wood, Wilson.

Replacements: Ansbro for Clarke (72), Powell for Dickson (63), Murray for Mujati (56), Sorenson for Day (72), Clark for Wood (75). Not Used: Sharman, Dreyer, Geraghty.

Ref: Jerome Garces (France).



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see also
Heineken Cup tables
09 Aug 06 |  Tables
Castres 27-20 Blues
15 Oct 10 |  Cardiff Blues
World Cup win realistic - Ashton
13 Oct 10 |  Northampton
Dickson calls for more patience
12 Oct 10 |  Northampton
Magners League 2010/11
02 Jul 10 |  Rugby Union
RaboDirect Pro12 table
09 Aug 06 |  Tables
Regional rugby archive
07 Jul 03 |  Welsh
BBC Sport NI coverage
05 Aug 11 |  Northern Ireland
BBC Scotland programme guide
26 Jul 09 |  Scotland
BBC Sport Wales coverage
03 Oct 11 |  Wales
Coming up next on Scrum V...
03 Nov 08 |  Welsh


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