Glasgow Warriors shrugged off their own errors and the disruption of a full stadium evacuation to gain revenge for their shock defeat last week and shut out Edinburgh in the 1872 Cup second leg at Scotstoun.
It won’t ever go into annals of nearly 150 years of Inter-City clashes as a classic, but it was certainly unique as the first half ended two minutes early after a fire scare forced a complete evacuation of the stadium and a 35-minute half-time interval.
But that was just about the chief excitement of the day with both teams’ attacking execution totally off-kilter, passes flying wildly into touch and fumbles ending most try-scoring threats.
Edinburgh arguably had the better chances in the first half but struggled to make any impact in an attacking sense in the second half, although Glasgow couldn’t pierce their defence due to their own errors with ball in hand.
They did however exert enough pressure with the little ball they did retain to force penalties, and unlike much of the season opted to kick for goal with most of them.
Finn Russell was a perfect four-from-four until right at the end George Horne’s flat pass allowed Lee Jones to score the game’s only try.
The first half was pretty sombre stuff from both teams and ended two minutes early when the entire 7500 crowd were evacuated following a fire scare in the North Stand.
Glasgow had opened the scoring within five minutes when Hamish Watson didn’t roll away at a ruck after a strong break from Alex Dunbar, Russell making the easy penalty, but thereafter the Warriors found themselves with the same issues as the first leg – poor ball retention and Edinburgh’s tenacious defence.
Edinburgh had the better scoring chances, Stuart McInally’s off-load to Damien Hoyland falling forward after the hooker had made an impressive break from a lineout move, and then Jaco van de Walt failing to hold an inside pass from Duhan van der Merwe when the line looked wide open to him.
The stand-off also kicked a penalty out in-goal when trying to pin Glasgow in their 22, missing a golden chance for Edinburgh to set up their lineout drive.
Edinburgh were struggling at the scrum but escaped twice when Glasgow moved into their 22 but were penalised by ref Mike Adamson for clearing out too far beyond the ball.
After the sirens sounded and the crowd filed out of the stadium, the coaches agreed to take half-time early, and when play restarted 35 minutes after the evacuation Edinburgh were offside moving up in defence and Russell kicked the penalty from 35 metres.
Glasgow wasted a lineout drive of their own and then an overlap up the right as Ali Price’s pass went behind Nick Grigg.
But on 57 minutes first Grigg and then replacement Peter Horne made good ground forcing another infringement from Watson and Russell kicked his side’s third penalty.
Glasgow were twice more penalised as they threatened in the Edinburgh half but the visitors were being starved of usable ball and making little headway against the Warriors defence in the second half.
Edinburgh’s attack was similarly blunted and with six minutes left a high tackle in midfield allowed Russell to boot his fourth penalty from 45 metres, his longest of the afternoon.
In the dying minutes Edinburgh fumbled breaking out of their own 22 and after two scrums, replacement scrum-half Horne attacked the blindside and put in Lee Jones in the corner for the try, which went unconverted.
Glasgow Warriors: R Jackson; L Jones, N Grigg, A Dunbar, N Matawalu; F Russell, A Price; J Bhatti, F Brown, Z Fagerson; K McDonald, J Gray (capt); R Harley, M Smith, M Fagerson. Replacements: P MacArthur for Brown 30, A Allan for Bhatti 62, S Halanukonuka for Fagerson 63, G Peterson for McDonald 70, C Fusaro for Smith 63, G Horne for Price 60, P Horne for Dunbar 40, H Jones for Grigg 75.
Edinburgh: B Kinghorn; D Hoyland, J Johnstone, P Burleigh, D van der Merwe; J van der Walt, S Hidalgo-Clyne; M McCallum, S McInally (capt), M Shields; B Toolis, G Gilchrist; J Ritchie, H Watson, V Mata. Replacements: N Cochrane for McInally 73, J Lay for McCallum 50, E Millar-Mills for Shields 63, F McKenzie for Toolis 53, C du Preez for Ritchie 55, N Fowles for Hidalgo-Clyne 58, C Dean for Johnstone 30, D Graham for Hoyland 71.
Ref: M Adamson (SRU)