Blues bag a bonus in France
Welsh region produce fine second-half fightback
Last Updated: 15/10/10 10:56pm
Molitika: scored first Blues try
Prop Scott Andrews powered over for a last-gasp try to secure Cardiff Blues a potentially important bonus-point from their trip to Castres.
The Welsh region looked poised to leave Stade Pierre Antoine empty-handed as they trailed 27-13 with time running out.
But Andrews, on as a replacement, burrowed his way over from close range with his try being confirmed by the video referee, allowing Ceri Sweeney to convert and seal the bonus-point.
It capped a fine second-half showing from Blues who had trailed 27-6 at the interval after Vincent Inigo and Marc Andreu had touched down for the home side.
Ma'ama Molitika had sparked the fightback with a try five minutes into the second period, before Andrews popped up with his late intervention.
A point represented a decent return for Dai Young's side who had been utterly outplayed over the course of the first 40 minutes.
Castres were on the front foot from the start and opened the scoring thanks to a Romain Teulet penalty on 12 minutes.
The full-back landed another two penalties either side of a Seremaia Bai drop-goal before Ben Blair struck with Cardiff's first points.
The goal-kicking full-backs exchanged further penalties to bring the score to 15-6.
But the French side then breached Cardiff's try-line when Inigo danced through the visitors' defence after collecting a speculative Yoan Audrin kick.
Castres in control
Teulet converted to give the side a 22-6 lead and things got even worse for Cardiff when Inigo's wing partner grabbed a try of his own minutes later.
Audrin was at the centre of the action again as he burst down the wing, the ball then being shifted to Teulet who chipped to the corner for Andreu to touch down.
But Cardiff finally sparked into life after the break, finding an intensity and purpose that had been non-existent in the first half.
They were rewarded after 45 minutes when Molitika crashed over, the Tonga international driving between two defenders after Tom James had recycled having been hauled down with the try-line at his mercy.
Sweeney converted to pull the Blues back to 27-13 and the visitors had their tails up and threatened on numerous other occasions.
A further score looked inevitable in the closing stages, but the hosts killed the ball at the breakdown with Thomas Sanchou given his marching orders as a result.
Cardiff took full advantage and, after a quick tap and several phases, Andrews drove his way through the Castres defence, with the help of Sam Warburton, to poach his try.