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Anscombe blow - but Blues win


Joaquin Tuculet was among the tryscorers in Cardiff Blues' defeat of Treviso.

Joaquin Tuculet was among the tryscorers in Cardiff Blues' defeat of Treviso.

Joaquin Tuculet was among the tryscorers in Cardiff Blues' defeat of Treviso.

Gareth Anscombe's home debut for Cardiff Blues was cut short by injury as the Arms Park outfit claimed just their second Guinness PRO12 victory of the season, 36-25.

Having taken his bow at full-back during last week's defeat in Edinburgh, the Welsh-qualified Kiwi switched to fly-half for the visit of bottom of the table Treviso.

He marked the occasion by kicking his first points for the region, but then picked up the dead leg which was to ultimately force him out of the game at the interval.

The Blues were trailing 13-12 at that stage with tries from Lloyd Williams and debutant Joaquin Tuculet having been countered by the efforts of Joe Carlisle.

But they went on to secure a bonus point victory through further touchdowns from wing Richard Smith, hooker Kristian Dacey and flanker Rory Watts-Jones, with Jones' score sealing the spoils after Francesco Minto's double.

Treviso opened the scoring through the boot of fly-half Carlisle in the ninth minute after Blues flanker Macauley Cook was yellow carded for a deliberate knock-on with an overlap looming.

Despite being down to 14 men, the hosts responded with the first try of the game from scrum-half Williams who threw a big dummy and darted over from close range after sustained pressure.

Anscombe added the conversion - but then in the 18th minute he suffered the bang to his right thigh which was to eventually cut short his night's work.

He kept going for the rest of the half, only for his misfortune to be compounded as he was undone by the bounce of the ball for Treviso's opening try as Carlisle's chip over the top sprung up at a virtual right angle into the Englishman's hands.

The Blues regained the lead just before the half hour thanks to a well taken try from impressive Tuculet. Receiving a misspass from Gavin Evans, the Argentinian Test full-back showed pace and strength as he hit the line and forced his way through two defenders to got the ball down one-handed.

Anscombe was wide with his conversion attempt from the left-hand touchline and Treviso who had the final word in the half with Carlisle landing a penalty.

When the sides came out for the second period, there was no Anscombe, with Gareth Davies replacing him at fly-half.

Davies also took over the goalkicking duties and was on target with a penalty to give the Blues a lead that was stretched when Smith was put over by an offload from Gavin Evans.

A training ground lineout move brought the bonus point try from Dacey, with replacement Watts-Jones sealing the victory after fellow sub Minto's double act.