This was a capital win for Edinburgh which saw them end the first burst of URC matches on a high, while also offering a lesson to Scottish sides on how to close out a victory.

The sharpness in attack laid the platform in the first half with man-the-match Chris Dean creating two tries with his elusiveness and distribution, while the second half was more about power and control to edge ahead and stay there.

Edinburgh backs coach Gareth Baber is a former Cardiff player and joint head coach, so it was a particularly happy return to his home town – albeit strange to be in the away dressing room.

“It was enjoyable to come out with a result as we did,” he said. “It was a competitive game, scrappy at times, but we matched up well and we started to get ascendancy with penalties at scrum time and driving line-outs, so overall we probably deserved the win.

“That puts us in a reasonable position with the break coming up and then after that we’re into the Christmas bloc.

“Chris Dean was good, he is a thinker and is always talking to people on the field. He led by his actions at the right times to get across gain lines, create opportunities and advantage in the game, but there were others around him pulling that together as well.

“Above all it was just a great effort to come down here and get a win.”

Having been competitive in South Africa and then ending Cardiff’s streak of three wins at home, including against the Stormers and Munster, there are signs that Edinburgh’s performances outside of Scotland are getting stronger.

“We pay a lot of attention to the cultural identity of the group, attention to what you need to do in training to transfer into games which does not change when you go on the road,” Baber said.

“They are huge elements in being resilient when you are away from home and I think we are in a better space now because we keep attention to that.”

While Edinburgh were without 14 players with the Scotland squad, Cardiff had lost just five and were able to field a few with a point to prove to Wales coach Wayne Pivac.

Maybe that weakened influence from the Scotland set-up led to a really strange thing when awarded an early penalty in front of the posts from a scrum, by deciding to kick the penalty as though points on the board were important in a rugby match!

Full-back Emiliano Boffelli kicked that penalty and then Dean created space for those outside him with two half breaks, both finished off by back-row support with Ben Muncaster and Luke Crosbie getting on the scoresheet.

In between, Cardiff twice scored from close range and added the conversion, but only one was allowed as a try.

Rhys Carre saw his effort belatedly ruled out as Italian referee Gianluca Gnecchi had to reverse his decision because of a double movement which had been clear to the naked eye, never mind slo-mo replays, which made the delayed review even odder.

No such problems for flanker Thomas Young who was able to twist his way over from another series of forward drives, while Cardiff were also left to rue other first-half opportunities they could not quite finish off.

There was a major blow for the visitors just before half time, when a line-out drive from Cardiff gained momentum and resulted in a penalty try with Edinburgh outside half Charlie Savala sin-binned for bringing down the maul.

It meant Cardiff took a two-point lead into the break and still had a few minutes of the second half against 14 men.

Edinburgh shrugged off the disadvantage with Boffelli putting his side back ahead with another penalty before the forwards took over, penalties from both scrum and line-out setting up a position on the Cardiff line.

They poured players into the line-out drive and that allowed replacement hooker Patrick Harrison to get the try, Boffelli’s conversion taking Edinburgh more than one score clear.

Cardiff had their chances but were unable to close the gap and once the scoreboard ticked past 80 minutes it was the visitors who were prepared to go for broke in trying to claim the fourth try and a bonus point.

That was not to be, but four points on the road can still be taken as a good return, especially given the number of players with other duties at the moment.

Scorers, Cardiff – Tries: Young, Penalty Try. Con: Evans. Pen: Evans.

Edinburgh – Tries: Muncaster, Crosbie, Harrison. Cons: Boffelli 2. Pens: Boffelli 2.

Cardiff: B Thomas; J Harries, M Grady (C Winnett 72), M Llewellyn, T Cabango; J Evans, L Williams; R Carré (C Domachowski 65), K Myhill (L Belcher 57), D Arhip (W Davies-King 74), J Turnbull (capt, T Williams 66), R Thornton J Botham, T Young, J Ratti (G Bradley 48). Not used: E Bevan, A Summerhill.

Edinburgh: E Boffelli; J Blain, M Currie, C Dean (C Scott 74), W Goosen; C Savala, C Shiel (H Pyrgos 61); B Venter (N Auterac 70), A McBurney (P Harrison 13), L de Bruin (A Williams 48), P Phillips (M Sykes 40), J Hodgson, B Muncaster (C Boyle 70, Muncaster 72), L Crosbie (capt), V Mata. Not used: J van der Walt.

Referee: Gianluca Gnecchi (FIR)