Assistant coach Allen Clarke bemoans lack of Ulster accuracy after Scarlets defeat

Scarlets Michael Collins scores his second try against Ulster in the 21-20 win in Belfast
Scarlets Michael Collins scores his second try against Ulster in the 21-20 win in Belfast

Assistant coach, Allen Clarke, felt a lack of accuracy in all areas of Ulster’s game contributed to Sunday’s 21-20 home defeat to Scarlets.

Having started round 15 of the Guinness PRO12 in top spot, wins for Connacht and Leinster saw Ulster demoted to third before Sunday’s game in Belfast.

And the Scarlets’ narrow win pushed Ulster down to fourth place – but still in serious contention to qualify for the play-offs.

Two first-half tries from Scarlets full-back Michael Collins helped the Welsh side take the hugely valuable win, with fly-half Aled Thomas adding a conversion and three penalties.

Ulster led 17-15 at half-time after superb tries from Craig Gilroy and Luke Marshall, both converted by Paddy Jackson who – on his debut as captain – also went on to add a penalty and a drop-goal for 10 of the home side’s final total, but it was not enough to clinch the win on Roger Wilson’s 200th appearance for the Province.

Ulster had won their last two home games in the league on the back of poor performances and Clarke accepted that maybe their luck had run out.

“You just cannot rely on things coming good at the end. You have to make things happen,” he said.

“ We lacked accuracy in all aspects of our game at times and in the end it cost us.”