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The first half, played in a continuous downpour, was a demonstration of how simple rugby was needed on the night, the Dragons doing the basics well while Edinburgh tried to play a more expansive game.
The home side had to survive an early onslaught but with a couple of lineout steals it looked as though Edinburgh might turn the screw but with stand off Phil Godman constantly kicking away good possession, no momentum was built up.
Jason Tovey and Wayne Evans in particular made Edinburgh pay as they kept them pinned in their own half for most of the first 40 minutes.
Fifteen minutes into the half a big carry by Dragons number eight Grant Webb saw Edinburgh offend and Arlidge slotted a simple penalty.
Edinburgh continued to play a passing game which only led to midfield disaster and with the Dragons biding their time another penalty chance came Alridge's way after 21 minutes and he put the Dragons 6-0 ahead.
Eight minutes later an Evans box kick had John Houston in trouble, Alan Jacobsen was the man deemed to have offended and Arlidge banged over his third penalty.
Edinburgh's woes were compounded when centre Ben Cairns, who had looked the home side's most dangerous back, limped off just before the break.
Edinburgh came out all guns blazing in the second half but for 16 minutes a remarkable Dragons defensive effort kept them at bay.
Time after time the Edinburgh scrum drove the visitors back and a series of penalties resulted, all of which Edinburgh opted to take as scrums.
Wing Tim Visser, number eight Ally Hogg and flanker Roddy Grant were all stopped inches short but finally the penalty was accepted and Godman slotted the points.
The game reverted the to the first half pattern with Dragons pinning Edinburgh back with some crafty kicking but the game exploded into life with 14 minutes to go.
Visser got away from Aled Brew to set up the field position, the ball was shipped crossfield and Godman found Nick De Luca whose cute offload put Andy Turnbull over for the try.
Godman missed the kick and in a frantic final 12 minutes both sides had chances to win the game, Godman missing a straightforward drop goal.
With two minutes to go Toby Falatau summed up the night’s handling by spilling the ball with the line at his mercy.