Ulster’s Pro12 play-off hopes suffered a setback after they were edged out by the Scarlets at the Kingspan Stadium. The result - which saw the lead change hands several times in the opening 40 minutes - saw Scarlets' men move up to third.
While Les Kiss' Ulster began the weekend at the top, they slipped back to fourth after claiming a losing bonus point and falling to only their second home league loss this term.
The game was a tug of war between the two sides, and Ulster led 17-15, at half-time, with the sides level at two tries apiece. The second half was a much more intense affair, with only nine points scored in total.
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An interesting point of the match was Chris Henry’s yellow card. Nothing malicious from Henry, merely a continual offense at the breakdown, with Henry being the scapegoat for Ulster’s dogged defence.
Ulster managed to keep the Scarlets at bay following Henry’s dismissal, and closed the lead to a point following two Scarlets penalties, to make it 21-20, with about 17 minutes to go.
However, neither team was able to capitalise following this enthralling encounter. Scarlets will be beaming after taking four points away from Ulster and boosting their prospects of a play-off spot.
Scarlets will travel to fifth-placed Edinburgh, a must win for the Scottish side if they want to push for a top four finish, while Ulster are in action against Welsh opposition yet again, as they face Cardiff Blues, who lost their last two games to Treviso and Leinster.
Ulster will be confident heading into this fixture as they have been successful in their last three encounters against the Blues.