It was a night of celebration and reflection for Andrew Trimble as he became Ulster’s most capped player in the bonus point with over Treviso at the Kingspan Stadium in the Guinness PRO12.
The first of the wingers 190 caps came against Cardiff at the Arms Park in 2005 and Ulster went on to claim the Celtic League title that season.
“I was texting David Humphreys the night before the game and it was amazing how many people were getting in touch to say ‘well done’,” said Trimble
“I fortunately got to play with players like Justin Harrison and David Humphreys at the start and Paddy Wallace as well who I overtook, I’m so proud of what I’ve achieved.”
It was that debut season that gives Trimble his fondest moment in an Ulster shirt.
“Winning silverware that season with Humph in 2006 when he got the drop goal over both uprights and off the crossbar was a special night.
“That was my first season of professional rugby and I thought it was all going to be straightforward and we still haven’t won anything since.”
“I hope it’s only a matter of time before we win some silverware again and I want to be part of that and keep working hard.”
“Hopefully we can just build on the momentum and when the guys come back from the World Cup it will be all systems go.”
Although Ulster scored seven tries against Treviso Trimble couldn’t put the icing on the cake by touching down.
“It was a big occasion to get to that milestone and then get one or two touches of the ball,” he joked.
“I was running around looking for the ball and sometimes that happens and I’ve had plenty of games like that.”
“What was pleasing for me is how clinical we were and we took them through phases and we didn’t get bored.”
“We were very patient and very composed and Peter Nelson and Paul Marshall steered the ship all night and the forwards created the platform.”
“It was nice to see big Lewis make a bit of a line break and he found more space than I did.”
“There was a lot to be pleased about but it’s just a shame that we did not get to keep the momentum going and we’ve got to wait another week to play Edinburgh.”
Craig Gilroy on the other wing scored two tries with the first a typical dazzling solo effort.
“I passed him the ball, it’s my fault.”
“As soon as I hit him, he took off and he after he beat the first guy I just knew and I was gutted that he was going to score the try of the season.”
“That’s how talented he is and I was just worried he was going to get his hat-trick at the end.”
“To be fair to him he’s a very talented boy and it was great to get out there and play some rugby with him.”
With the game and bonus point wrapped up Trimble was replaced to a standing ovation.
“I was 100% and even though I didn’t get too many touches of the ball and I didn’t stretch myself too much that’s the best physically I’ve felt.”
“I felt really good out there in spite of not getting too many opportunities with the ball in hand.”
“I feel like I can really kick on and that’s really pleasing from my point of view.”
Trimble would have been happy to finish the game as he had already received acclaim from crowd before the first whistle.
“Rob left me standing there for about five minutes by myself, I’d soaked up enough of the atmosphere at that stage, I thought I’d had to play Treviso by myself,” joked Trimble.