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Premiership 7s Series Finals: Match Round-up

8th August 2014

Cardiff Blues made the semi-finals of the Premiership 7s Series at Twickenham Stoop before losing out to reigning champions Gloucester Rugby. We look back at our night in the English capital.

Cup Quarter-Final: Leicester Tigers 14 Cardiff Blues 19
A dramatic injury time try from Tom Williams snatched victory for Cardiff Blues as the region opened the Premiership Rugby 7s Series Final at Twickenham Stoop with a late, late win.
Leicester looked destined for the last four after opening up a 14-5 lead with less than two minutes left.
But a try from Dan Fish, to add to his first half opener, and sensational last minute effort from Tom Williams saw Blues book a place in the Cup semi-final. 
Blues started the game on the front foot against Leicester Tigers, who qualified for the finals as runners-up to Newcastle Falcons in Pool D, and early runs from skipper Richard Smith and Geraint Walsh threatened to open the Midlanders up.
The game was being played completely in the Leicester half and the opening score came when Tomos Williams exploited space and an overlap to send Fish over in the left corner.
Only frantic late defence from Tigers stopped Tomos Williams just short of the line before turnover ball allowed Andy Bulumakau to run length of field to score a converted try for 7-5 half-time lead.
Blues looked to hit back at the start of the second half with a good step by Jevon Groves feeding Fish who looked to break and offload but his pass found the touchline and not hands.
At the other end only a superb try saving tackle from Ben Roach stopped George Tresidder after the young Leicester flier threatened to run in from his own half after a quick tap penalty.
Thomas Williams then had to be alert to stop Dan Rundle after he hacked ahead before second Leicester score as Oli Bryant picked a gap to extend the lead to 14-5.
Blues refused to give up and a break down the middle from Walsh gave the space for the supporting Fish who tore over for a second try.
A frenetic final minute saw Leicester control possession until they gave away a penalty with time up. Blues took the tap and when they went wide through quick hands it was Tom Williams who was the last action hero as he tore away to steal the win.
Cardiff Blues (starting line-up): Rhys Shellard, Jevon Groves, Richard Smith (c),  Tomos Williams, Geraint Walsh, Dan Fish, Harry Davies 
Cup Semi-Final: Gloucester Rugby 24 Cardiff Blues 14
Cardiff Blues saw their hopes of Premiership 7s Series glory end at the semi-final stage as - despite two tries from star man Dan Fish - they lost out to reigning champions in horrendous conditions.
Gloucester eased into the last four with an emphatic 50-5 destruction of Northampton Saints and quickly opened the scoring through Bill Meakes.
The impressive Fish grabbed his third try of the night but a breakaway score from Henry Purdy nudged Gloucester into a slender 12-7 lead in the wet.
The lottery of the second half in torrential rain saw Blues go back ahead through Fish, but late scores from Steph Reynolds and Sam Showering handed the win to the English outfit.
Blues looked to use the wet and slippery conditions with a kick ahead into space in the opening minute to pin Gloucester back.
But it was Gloucester who should have benefitted from a kicking game in the opening minutes as Steph Reynolds knocked on with the line at his mercy.
The opening score of the game came from Meakes, after quick hands down in their own half saw Gloucester link-up neatly to break clear down the right flank.
The wet ball was proving hard for both teams to control, but it was Blues who held onto possession better before Fish crashed over from close range to put Blues 7-5 ahead.
A chip ahead from Geraint Walsh was cleanly collected by Purdy and he pinned his ears back and raced into open space to score for a 12-7 lead at half-time.
A brilliant try saving tackle from Tom Williams stopped Gloucester going further ahead as they burst up the middle.
Fish again showed his alert nature after the restart as he finished off a period of sustained pressure by darting around the breakdown to score under the posts for a 14-12 lead.
But a sublime length of the field score from the jet-heeled Reynolds put the English Premiership side back ahead.
And a slice of fortune saw Gloucester take the ball from the restart and Showering ran in unopposed to settle the encounter in worsening weather.
Cardiff Blues: Rhys Shellard, Jevon Groves, Richard Smith (c) Thomas Williams, Tomos Williams, Geraint Walsh, Dan Fish