Dan’s the Man For Ospreys

Dan Edwards proved he is a youngster with a bright future ahead of him as the 20-year-old emerged as the matchwinner for the Ospreys at the weekend.

Coach Toby Booth paid a glowing tribute to his match-winning “quarterback” following the dramatic 19-17 victory over Ulster Rugby in Swansea.

Fly-half Edwards landed a 30-metre drop goal in the 80th minute to snatch the spoils and was then engulfed by his delirious team-mates.

Giving the lowdown on the last-gasp finale, Booth revealed: “The good thing about that whole episode really was the fact that Dan initiated the whole thing.

“We obviously have a drop goal routine for exactly those moments. But it’s one thing having it, it’s another thing doing it.

“Ultimately, the quarterback is the quarterback and to have the self-belief and also the skill and execution to do it, those pressure moments are really important.

“One of our buzz phrases is we talk about going all in and Dan went all in. That’s a great example of that.

“He is developing into a fine player.”

Trailing 7-6 at half-time, the Ospreys had forwards Morgan Morse and James Ratti yellow carded in the third quarter and were down to 13 men at one stage.

They still managed to take the lead through a thrilling breakaway try from centre Keiran Williams, only for Ulster to go back in front four minutes from time thanks to a long-range penalty from fly-half Jake Flannery.

But then came the dramatic conclusion and Edwards’ decisive drop goal.

After Alex Cuthbert had tipped Jacob Stockdale into touch on the Ulster 22 to claim a home line-out they had one final shot at glory.

Kieran Williams ran into midfield off the line-out take, Edwards dropped into the pocket and over went the kick that pushed the Welsh region up into seventh place ahead of Ulster.

By far and away the best of the four Welsh regions, the Ospreys, made it five wins in a row in all competitions as they made Ulster pay for a string of unforced errors and conceding 11 penalties.

Where Munster and Connacht had led earlier in the weekend with victories on Welsh soil, Ulster fell at what is traditionally one of their toughest venues to visit.

They had won 19 of their last 21 URC games against Welsh opposition, with both of the losses coming in away games against the Ospreys.

The highly promising Edwards, who signed a new contract last week, said: “I’ve got to give full credit to the pack. I thought they were brilliant and really drove it.

“There were a lot of times in that game we could have just fallen away. It’s a great result for us. I thought we were outstanding.”

Booth added: “We found a way and the boys should take massive credit for that.”

Ulster head coach Dan McFarland said: “The game was pretty scrappy in the first half and we looked a little bit rusty after the break.

“Ultimately the game came down to two instances, both of which we were in control.

“One in their 22 where they got an intercept pass, and the second one was at the end of the game when we were in total control and the referee called a scrum on the back of a maul. I have literally no idea of what that was about.

“I’m going to ask and find out, because ultimately those two instances decided the game in the Ospreys favour.”