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Edinburgh Rugby will be hoping to maintain their exemplary form at home in the European Rugby Challenge Cup when they host Cardiff Blues at BT Murrayfield on Saturday, live on Sky Sports.
Edinburgh have won 14 of their last 15 home games in the Challenge Cup (L1), however, their one defeat in that run came at this stage last season (v La Rochelle).
Cardiff Blues, the 2010 winners, are in the quarter-finals for the fourth time with their previous three games also played away from home (W1, L2).
The Blues finished top of Pool 2 after winning five of their six matches, conceding the fewest points (95) and tries (10) of any side this season.
European rugby is back. ?
Join the fight and secure your tickets for this Saturday’s @ERChallengeCup Quarter-Final against Cardiff Blues at BT Murrayfield.
— Edinburgh Rugby (@EdinburghRugby) March 27, 2018
However, only Enisei-STM scored fewer points than the Blues during the pool stage (99), while only Oyonnax scored fewer tries (12).
In contrast, Edinburgh were the top points scorers in the pool stage, averaging 47 points and 6.7 tries per game. They also averaged the most metres, clean breaks and defenders beaten.
Edinburgh Rugby line-up
15. Blair Kinghorn; 14. Dougie Fife, 13. Mark Bennett, 12. Chris Dean, 11. Duhan Van Der Merwe; 10. Jaco van der Walt, 9. Nathan Fowles; 1. Jordan Lay, 2. Stuart McInally, 3. WP Nel, 4. Fraser McKenzie, 5. Grant Gilchrist, 6. Magnus Bradbury, 7. John Hardie, 8. Viliame Mata
16. Neil Cochrane, 17. Rory Sutherland, 18. Simon Berghan, 19. Lewis Carmichael, 20. Cornell Du Preez, 21. Sean Kennedy, 22. Duncan Weir, 23. Phil Burleigh
Cardiff Blues line-up
15. Gareth Anscombe; 14. Blaine Scully, 13. Rey Lee-Lo, 12. Willis Halaholo, 11. Owen Lane; 10. Jarrod Evans, 9. Tomos Williams; 1. Gethin Jenkins, 2. Kristian Dacey, 3. Dillon Lewis, 4. George Earle, 5. Josh Turnbull, 6. Josh Navidi, 7. Ellis Jenkins, 8. Nick Williams
16. Kirby Myhill, 17. Rhys Gill, 18. Anton Peikrishvili, 19. Seb Davies, 20. Macauley Cook, 21. Lloyd Williams, 22. Garyn Smith, 23. Matthew Morgan
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Cardiff Blues progressed to the European Rugby Challenge Cup semi-finals as they clinched a 20-6 victory against Edinburgh Rugby at BT Murrayfield in the Scottish capital on Saturday evening.
- Tries from Ellis Jenkins and Blaine Scully as well as 10 points from the reliable boot of Jarrod Evans saw Cardiff Blues claim an away win in the knockout stages, with their reward being a home fixture against Pau at Cardiff Arms Park in April.
- In a slovenly opening quarter it was Edinburgh Rugby who took the lead via the boot of fly-half Jaco van der Walt as he slotted a penalty kick, but Cardiff Blues soon grew into the game.
- Two minutes later, a speculative cross-field kick from Evans was seized upon in the in-goal area by the sliding hands of flanker Jenkins and with the conversion Cardiff took a four-point lead.
- Danny Wilson’s Blues tightened their grip on the fixtures on the half-hour mark as winger Scully produced a fine display of pace and power as he forced his way through the Edinburgh Rugby defence to slide home a second Cardiff try and a brilliant Evans conversion extended the lead to 11 points at the interval.
- Jaco van der Walt trimmed the Edinburgh Rugby deficit to eight points shortly after the restart, but his opposite number Evans continued to add to his tally with a three-pointer of his own two minutes later.
- Cardiff Blues moved two converted scores ahead when Evans chalked up his second penalty kick of the evening, but Edinburgh Rugby were given hope when try-scorer Jenkins was sent to the sin-bin for 10 minutes.
- However, Edinburgh Rugby were unable to make their personnel advantage pay as Cardiff Blues offered a stoic defensive effort, led by Heineken Man of the Match Josh Navidi – who completed 18 of 19 tackles – as the visitors progressed to the final four of the Challenge Cup.