Cardiff Blues 15 - 17 Leicester Tigers
HT 7-14
Sat 11 August 14:30 Cardiff Arms Park Att: 3,837 Ref: Dan Jones Friendly

Cardiff Blues 15 Leicester Tigers 17

Sat 18 Aug 2018 17:29 Cardiff Blues 15 Leicester Tigers 17

Joe Ford's last gasp penalty sealed victory for Leicester Tigers in Cardiff Blues' opening pre-season fixture at Cardiff Arms Park.

Tigers raced into a 14-point lead, but John Mulvihill's side bounced back thanks to tries from Jason Harries and Dane Blacker.

Steven Shingler's late penalty seemed to have secured victory for the hosts, but Ford slotted a long-distance penalty at the death to give his side a two-point win.

The home side started positively, as they forced a turnover from Tigers' first driving line-out. The resulting scrum saw a penalty awarded to the hosts, and Lewis Jones' quick tap caught the home defence napping, finding a way into the visitors' half for the first time.

Despite a number of strong carries, including from debutant Harries, Leicester eventually relieved the pressure.

Jones' lively start to the game continued in defence, as he put in a big hit in midfield. However, only moments later, the visitors were under the posts for the first score of the game.

Jordan Olowofela broke past a challenge in midfield, and found himself with a clear path to the line. Joe Ford added the extras.

With 10 minutes on the clock, the outside half missed an opportunity to extend his side's lead, striking the uprights with his first penalty attempt of the game.

The wet and windy conditions played its part in a scrappy encounter, and Tigers had to keep it tight for their second try of the afternoon. A loose ball in midfield saw the visitors hack downfield.

The race was on, but a collision saw referee, Dan Jones, award Tigers a penalty. Ford opted for the corner, and a strong drive from the line-out saw Thom Smith crash over.

Ford added the extras from out wide, but Cardiff Blues were hungry to strike back immediately.

A long pass from Willis Halaholo put Steven Shingler into space on the right. The outside half hacked the ball past the opposing defence. Harries collected and looked for Millard on his inside, but possession slipped away from the centre, with the try-line at his mercy.

Mulvihill's side maintained the pressure, however, and made it count before the end of the half.

Dan Fish found himself isolated in midfield, but there was a moment of magic from the full back, who chipped across and into space, allowing Harries to cross over for a debut try. Shingler made no mistakes from the conversion.

Only seven points separated the sides at half time, as the hosts made five changes during the interval.

Shingler had displayed a wide range of kicks throughout the afternoon, and his accuracy and tactical nous eventually led to the Blues' second score of the afternoon.

The outside half's long distance punt pinned the visitors in their own 22. The resulting line-out was stolen by Mulvihill's men, and Shingler's poke through allowed Aled Summerhill to win a penalty.

The Leicester defence switched off, and Dane Blacker pounced with a quick tap to score in the corner.

Shingler put his side in the lead for the first time thanks to a penalty on the hour mark.

It seemed that Wales' Capital Region would secure the win, but the visitors were awarded a penalty on the half way mark at the death, with Ford slotting to put Tigers back ahead.