Cardiff Blues 15-17 Leicester Tigers: John Mulvihill era starts with late defeat; The Welsh side were beaten at the death at the Arms Park.
Byline: Andy Howell
John Mulvihill's first match as head coach of Cardiff Blues ended in disappointment as they were mugged at the death.
Leicester outside-half Joe Ford put over a monster penalty from halfway with seconds remaining to steal the spoils in front of a crowd of 3,837 at a rain-sodden Arms Park.
Blues had done enough to get the reign of the Australian off to a successful start but paid the price for not turning second-half pressure and territory into more points.
Wales international Tom James made a welcome return for the Blues at left-wing following his battle with depression.
But it was Leicester who stormed into the lead with full-back Jordan Olowofela, who starred at the Under-20 World Championship for England and has been named in Eddie Jones' senior squad, scoring.
He cut through the Blues defence near halfway to touch down between the uprights.
Cardiff Blues v Leicester Tigers in pictures
Ford, the younger brother of England play-maker George Ford, converted to give Tigers a seven-point advantage.
But he hit an upright with a penalty attempt as the rain teemed down in the Welsh capital.
However, his side doubled their lead when they got their second try of the match.
No.8 Thom Smith was on the end of a driving line-out after they elected to put a penalty into the corner, with Ford expertly converting from wide out.
Blues had a chance to respond but centre Harri Millard failed to hold on to new signing Jason Harries' inside pass.
They opened their account following a sublime piece of skill from Dan Fish, which created a try out of nowhere for Harries.
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Blues were on the attack but Fish was on the verge of being swamped by the defence when he somehow managed to jink and find just enough space to put in an improvised left-footed kick.
The ball was weighted perfectly for Harries to run on to and score, outside-half Steven Shingler successfully converting to halve the deficit to seven points at the end of a disjointed first half.
Dane Blacker got Blues' second try in the 52nd minute after catching Tigers napping with a quick tap-penalty.
The scrum-half sprinted over in the corner but Shingler was unable to level matters, pushing his conversion attempt across the face of the uprights.
Shingler put the Blues ahead for the first time when he nailed a penalty at the end of the third quarter to make it 15-14 in their favour but they fell foul of the accurate boot of Joe Ford.
Blues -- Tries: Harries, Blacker; con: Shingler; pen: Shingler.
Leicester -- Tries: Olowofela, T Smith; cons: Ford (2); pen: Ford.
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|Publication:||Wales Online (Cardiff, Wales)|
|Date:||Aug 11, 2018|
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