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Last Updated: Saturday, 1 November, 2003, 20:08 GMT
Dragons douse Gunners fire
CELTIC LEAGUE
Gareth Baber
Dragons (17) 34
Tries: G Baber, J Forster (2). Cons: C Warlow (2). Pens: Warlow (5).
Edinburgh (16) 22
Tries: B Laney. Con: Laney. Pens: Laney (3), A Warnock (2).
Att: 3,012
The Dragons' maintained their 100% home record with a fine win over Edinburgh at Rodney Parade.

Evergreen flanker Jason Forster crossed for a brace of tries, scrum-half Gareth Baber added another, and fly-half Craig Warlow kicked 19 points.

Brendan Laney, back in the Edinburgh side after injury, was the chief points-harvester for the visitors, a try included amongst his 16 points.

The victory moves the Gwent side up to fifth in the table, Edinburgh sliding to ninth.

In a game largely dominated by the whistle of Irish referee Olan Trevor and thus the boot of the teams' respective goal-kickers, the Dragons did not seal their victory until seven minutes from time.

Then they won a scrum against the head and Baber chipped ahead just outside the Edinburgh 22.

We've now moved out of second gear into third
Dragons coach Mike Ruddock
When opposite number Graeme Burns missed the ball, Baber was up to gather and score.

Outside half Craig Warlow converted from the touchline and put his side clear at 34-22.

Before then Dragons' outstanding flanker Forster had grabbed tries after breaking away from mauls in the 10th and 53rd minutes and Warlow had kicked five penalty goals.

Opposite number Laney kicked three and replacement Alistair Warnock two when Laney was off the field with blood streaming from his nose.

That was the result of a 17th-minute collision with Dragons fullback Sione Tuipulotu, who was also off briefly with a cut eye.

Our young players are stepping up to the mark
Edinburgh forwards coach Henry Edwards
On a cold evening both sides tried to play expansive rugby but Newport always looked the more dangerous and might have gained a bonus point in the final minutes when Forster was held on the line as he went for his hat trick.

It was a pity a splendid display by Tuipulotu, on permit from Welsh Premier Division side Newport, was spoilt when his dropping the ball on his 22 led to Laney's try when he received from the resultant scrum and scythed through unopposed between the posts.

After the match, Dragons coach Mike Ruddock said: "We've now moved out of second gear into third, but there's a lot more to come from this side."

Edinburgh forwards coach Henry Edwards said: "Our young players are stepping up to the mark and ensuring we are competitive."


Dragons: Sione Tuipulotu; Nathan Brew, Hal Luscombe, Andy Marinos (capt), Ben Breeze; Craig Warlow, Gareth Baber; Adam Black, Steve Jones, Chris Anthony, Ian Gough, Peter Sidoli, Jamie Ringer, Jason Forster, Rhys Oakley.
Replacements: Rhys Thomas, Paul Young, Shawn Van Rensburg, Luke Charteris, Steve Winn, Lee Jarvis, Bryan Shelbourne.

Edinburgh: Hugo Southwell, Simon Webster, Marcus Di Rollo, Craig Joiner, Conan Sharman, Brendan Laney, Graeme Burns, Ramin Mathieson, Carlo Di Ciacca, Joel Brannigan, Guy Perrett, Alastair Kellock, Todd Blackadder (Capt), Allister Hogg, Andrew Dall.
Replacements: Andrew Kelly, Craig Smith, Alasdair Strokosch, Simon Cross, Rory Lawson, Alistair Warnock, Tom Philip

Referee: Olan Trevor (Ireland)




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