Second half blitz from Ulster, proves to much for Quins. 15th Dec.2019
Harlequins 10 Ulster Rugby 34
Heineken Champions Cup Round 4
Peter Moore at the Stoop
Ulster maintained their one hundred per cent record in this seasons Champions Cup, after a four try blitz in the second half was enough to see of Harlequins in a must win game for the hosts.
John Cooney carried on from last weekend by kicking Ulster into an early lead in the seventh minute when Quins were penalised for getting offside.
Within twenty minutes of the opening exchanges Paul Gustard bought on two game changers in the shape of Travis Ismaiel and James Chisholm- returning from injury, for Will Evans and HIA Brett Herron.
Following Quins first real period of pressure, the hosts were rewarded when James Lang slotted over a penalty kick from right in front of the posts.
On the stroke of half time the visitors scored a fine end to end breakaway try with Billy Burns making the initial break, with Jacob Stockdale and Matt Faddes involved with Cooney touching down. The former Connacht scrum half added the extras to give Ulster the advantage at the break by leading 10-3.
Harlequins came mighty close to closing the gap at the start of the second half following a brilliant 40-meter break from Semi Kunatani who offloaded to Ross Chisholm with the full back caught by Cooney just five metres short of the line. Within three minutes the visitors had added their second try of the night thanks to Stuart McCloskey’s grubber kick which Luke Marshall gathered to touch down, with Cooney kicking the extras, Ulster were beginning to take firm control of the game.
That was enhanced in the 60th minute when Cooney added his second try of the game after a lovely pick up and spotting a gap ran through to cross. After adding the extras from the boot, the visitors increased their lead to 24-3.
Harlequins responded a minute later with their first try of the match when South African lock Stephan Lewies crashed over after a powerful charge from Paul Lasike. James Lang converted to cut the gap to 14 points.
From a mistake from a Quins line out, Ulster wrapped up victory and claimed the try bonus point when a quick counter attack was finished of by Faddes with just four minutes to go. There was still time for Replacement Tom O’Toole to cross in the dying minutes to complete Ulster’s fourth consecutive win in the competition and end Quins interest in the competition.