Ospreys boost URC play-off hopes with epic bonus point win in South Africa

Luke Morgan crossed for two tries in the win over the Stormers in Cape Town -Credit:Chris Fairweather/Huw Evans Agency
Luke Morgan crossed for two tries in the win over the Stormers in Cape Town -Credit:Chris Fairweather/Huw Evans Agency

The Ospreys boosted their hopes of reaching the United Rugby Championship play-offs with an remarkable bonus point victory over the Stormers in Cape Town.

Toby Booth's side headed into the clash at the DHL Stadium in ninth place, after wins for Ulster and the Lions this weekend. However, two tries from winger Luke Morgan and further scores from Sam Parry and the superlative Harri Deaves secured a 27-21 victory that moved them back into the top eight.

To a man, the Ospreys were superb on their way to what has to be one of the greatest results in their history.

It was the Ospreys who struck first in South Africa, with Morgan getting over for the opening try after 9 minutes, latching onto Dan Edwards' grubber through.

The hosts didn't take long to hit back, with Dan du Plessis crossing after the Stormers sliced through the Ospreys defence from a lineout.

Despite losing young fly-half Edwards shortly after, the Ospreys forged ahead, with close carries to the line resulting in hooker Parry forcing his way over to put the Ospreys ahead again.

As the first-half drew to a close, the mercurial talents of Springbok fly-half Manie Libbok would backfire, resulting in a third try for the Ospreys. Having started the half with a flurry of kick-passes, his final one before half-time was read superbly by Edwards' replacement Jack Walsh.

Walsh burst from deep to claim the kick, before stepping past one would-be tackler and feeding Morgan for his second score.

The Stormers started the second-half well, with a brilliant team try from deep being finished off by No. 8 Evan Roos.

However, with the Ospreys' scrum getting plenty of joy against the South African pack, the Ospreys pushed further ahead after the hour-mark. More good work by the pack was rewarded with openside Deaves getting over for the bonus point try that his all-action performance deserved.

The home side came back, throwing everything at the Ospreys. But some brilliant defence on their own line, with Huw Sutton and Owen Watkin both coming up with crucial turnovers under the shadow of their own sticks, and a late penalty from Walsh ensured the Ospreys would be the victors in this one.

However, with every point crucial, the Stormers still pushed for a losing bonus point - with Max Nagy yellow-carded for a deliberate knock-on after the clock had gone red, resulting in a penalty try for the home side.

That wasn't enough, though, to take the shine off a remarkable victory by the Welsh side.