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Ulstermen edged out in a thrilling Varsity showpiece

By Matt Lloyd

Ulster's Cambridge University trio helped restore some pride but it was Oxford who claimed a sixth Varsity Match win in a row at Twickenham, triumphing 12-6.

Flanker Daniel Dass and hooker Max Montgomery suffered defeat with Cambridge at the home of English rugby.

But while they may have been on the wrong side of a captivating 134th Varsity Match, the former Ulster Under-18s helped restore the pride of one of the most famous institutions in the world after last year's record 43-6 loss to their bitter rivals.

Paddy Culvert of Down High was an unused replacement for Cambridge.

Former Belfast Royal Academy student Das was left bloodied by the tightest contest in 14 years.

He said: "We're super disappointed and emotional about the result but there was a huge emphasis on restoring some pride in the jersey after last year.

"This year was all about attitude. The captain drilled that into us, we latched onto it and carried it into the game. No-one gave an inch."

The 20-year-old spent a year with Belfast Harlequins before moving to study an Economics degree in St Catherine's College.

Though little did he imagine he would be lining up alongside a Lions star in Jamie Roberts.

Das said: "It has been great to play with such a great player. When I walked into the dressing room on his first day and saw him there, I walked straight back out because it was so surreal. But he is a very humble guy, he helps guys on the pitch but has been one of the lads.

"It has been an honour to play with him, but no more than with the rest of the guys in a wonderful team."

Roberts did not make it past half-time after failing to run off a dead leg. Oxford skipper Henry Lamont was knocked-out in the same collision after 27 seconds.

Four penalties from the Dark Blues fly-half George Cullen proved enough to win the first Varsity Match in 14 years that failed to produce a try.

Belfast Telegraph


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