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Ulster 25-24 Harlequins: Paul Gustard believes Quins can still progress from Champions Cup Pool 3 despite paying heavy price for last-gasp blunder

The Irish outfit stayed top of Pool 3 and left Quins' qualification hopes in tattersJohn Cooney won the game for Ulster after a last-minute foul by Tevita CavubatiQuins head of rugby Paul Gustard praised his side and refused to blame CavubatiUlster saw off Harlequins 25-24 in the Champions Cup at the Kingspan Stadium

Paul Gustard refused to throw in the European towel despite Tevita Cavubati's moment of madness that cost the London side victory in the Champions Cup.

Cavubati's rash off-the-ball tackle only a minute from time when he rushed out of defence and was penalised by referee Mike Adamson gave John Cooney the chance to win the game for Ulster.

It kept the Irish outfit top of Pool 3 with three successive wins but leaves Quins with just five points and needing to win all their remaining games to stand any chance of progressing to the next stage.

Ulster 25-24 Harlequins: Paul Gustard believes Quins can still progress from Champions Cup Pool 3 despite paying heavy price for last-gasp blunder

Craig Gilroy (left) and Ulster encountered Michele Campagnaro and Harlequins on Saturday

Stuart McCloskey was among the try scorers for Ulster in the Champions Cup Round 3 match

Ulster secured a narrow late victory, protecting their unbeaten home run in Europe since 2017

Quins head of rugby Gustard refused to point the finger of blame at Cavubati and instead insisted: 'It's so frustrating not to win, especially when it comes down to something like that at the end.

'But to come here and give Ulster the fright of their lives showed real courage and effort. They have not lost a European game at home since 2017 and we could easily have beaten them.

'It's not dead yet — we have Ulster at home next and we will be doing our level best to get the victory.'

Ulster were inspired by centre Stuart McCloskey who was a real force of nature, grabbing a try himself and being involved in most of their attacks.

McCloskey put Ulster ahead before two converted Elia Elia tries gave Quins a nine-point lead

Adam McBurney scored a try for Ulster with 13 minutes remaining as Quins let their lead slip

Luke Marshall (left) and Travis Ismaiel tussled before Cooney's decisive 79th-minute penalty

Cooney and Marcus Smith exchanged early kicking blows before England prospect Alex Dombrandt rounded off a move for the opening try for the visitors. The No8 took Kyle Sinckler's short pass and forced his way through two tacklers and across the line for a try converted by Smith.

Ulster drew level by the break with McCloskey catching and then off-loading Billy Burns' cross-field kick to flanker Sean Reidy who dived over for a fine try.

McCloskey put his side head shortly into the second half with a strong finish in the left-hand corner before the game appeared to swing in Quins favour with two quick tries from hooker Elia Elia.

Ulster were whipped into a frenzy by their passionate fans as first they mauled Quins back over their line with hooker Adam McBurney claiming the try. And then Cavubati lost his head as Quins tried to defend their lead and Cooney stepped up to seal the win and the points for Ulster.


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