Rugby Reports 17th December 2016
Callum Tree on a charge, supported by Lewys Gibby
Price powers his way to classy try brace
Narberth18 - Newcastle Emlyn 6
Two excellent tries from outstanding centre Jack Price helped Narberth complete a deserved double over old rivals Newcastle Emlyn at the Lewis Lloyd Ground, having already won by 23-13 at Dol Wiber early in the season.
Price has formed a profitable partnership with Ollie Reyland as they both enjoy running at the opposition, with Price going close to hat-trick as he, Liam Hutchings, Nick Gale and James Stephenson were ever-ready to spread play wide.
But it was Emlyn who made the brighter start as they established an early 6-3 lead through two penalties by winger Daniel Davies against a long-range effort by Nick Gale after the winger had missed an easier effort.
Emlyn full back Sion Leonard was also well-wide with a drop goal attempt before Gale levelled matters and The Otters led 11-6 at the interval with an excellent late try by Price after good handling by Lewys Gibby, Ianto Griffiths, Hutchings and Reyland in the build-up.
Emlyn had strong runners of their own in Tomi Jones, Llyr Jones and Llyr Davies but good defence in which Richard Rees, Sean Jenkins and especially Callum Tree and skipper Alex Jenkins worked tirelessly, saw them unable to add to their tally.
And it was Price who set the seal on the Otters 11th win in 14 games with another classy support try which Gale converted – and a deserved third place at the end of 2016!
Narberth RFC also celebrated their role in the community as the recent Slave Auction organised by chairman Dorian Phillips raised £4,580 and it was presented to Mr Yeung, the consultant urology surgeon representing the Hywel Dda Health Board, to help in the battle against Prostate Cancer.
James Stephenson: Liam Hutchings; Ollie Reyland; Jack Price; Nick Gale: Ianto Griffiths; Lewys Gibby: Bradley Davies; Dan Smith; Tom Slater: Jake Simm; Alex Jenkins (Capt): Richard Rees; Sean Jenkins; Callum Tree. Replacements: Dylan Cooper; Steffan Phillips; Dewi Williams; Joe Hutchings; Jonathan Rogers.
Sion Leonard: Llyr Davies; Tomi Jones; Llyr Jones; Dan Davies: Richard Hope; Mike Jones: Emyr Davies; Alex Williams (Capt); Gethin Davies: Dan Harvard; Rhys Morgan: Joel James; Gareth Thompson; Luke Kendall. Replacements: Bryn Jones; Jack Parry; Dylan Davies; Neil Elworthy, Dafydd Evans.
Good Otters' defence early on
Division One (West):
Dominating second half ensures Preseli Men success
Crymych 27 - Whitland 10
A powerful second half performance saw Crymych take the spoils against Whitland at Parc Lloyd Thomas to retain their top-five spot whilst The Borderers remain rooted in the bottom two places despite their graft in this hard-fought local derby.
In a very tight and combative first half The Preseli Men led 6-0 thanks to two penalties from outside half Rhys Davies, who also converted all three second half tries by full back Gethin Gibby and right winger Dylan Ladd (2), all coming from hard-fought possession gained by the likes of Guto Davies, Rhys Davies and skipper Tom Powell.
Whitland responded with unconverted tries by the experienced Gareth Bennett and Marc Jones but it was The Preseli Men who grabbed the vital league points that will have pleased new coach Neil Machin and his players.
Gethin Gibby - scored a try for Crymych in win against Whitland
Division Two (West):
Simon steers Seagulls home
Fishguard & Goodwick 11 - Haverfordwest 3
Simon James claimed the only try of the match in a hard-fought contest with Haverfordwest, who remain rooted at the foot of the table despite playing their part in a tough and uncompromising Division Two derby.
James ploughed over from a close range scrum to give the Seagulls a boost alongside two penalties from No 10 Kial Keane but the experienced No 8 and former captain was being teased by team mates and supporters alike in the clubhouse about needing glasses because he had the chance of a second similar score but didn’t see that he had crossed the whitewash a couple of metres and a relieved Blues team were able to save a score by touching down before James did!
Skipper Gavin Walsh was chosen as Fishguard man of the match, closely followed by blind-side flanker Luke Freebury. Mike Jenkins and Chris Shousha, whilst Terry Lovell and Morgan caught the eye for the Blues, who still have just one win from nine league outings despite putting a lot into this game.
Simon James - another vital try for Fishguard
Seasiders hold on well after strong start
Carmarthen Athletic 10 - Tenby United 19
Tenby United remain top of the section table after this hard-fought win over a Carmarthen Athletic side which remains in the bottom two in the table, with the only disappointment for The Seasiders being the fact that they were unable to pouch a bonus point for scoring four tries, despite appearing likely to do just that at half time.
Tenby were 12-0 up in the first half as Chris James’s side were in control up front and had tries by winger Greg Lees-Griffiths and bland-side flanker Mike Davies, one converted by Johnny Morgan.
Then outside half Scott James weaved his way through for a try converted by Morgan and at 19-0 The Seasiders were well in control but the Athletic battled their way back with unconverted tries by Robbie Thomas and Will Edwards as Tenby were good value for victory nonetheless.
Scott James - try for Tenby United
Division Three (West):
Christmas comes early for coach Ossie
Pembroke 0 - Pembroke Dock Harlequins 7
Pembroke Dock Harlequins created the shock result of the day as they journeyed up the hill to Crickmarren and beat oldest rivals Pembroke by the only score of the game – and no-one was more delighted than coach Ossie Boswell, who had played all his rugby at Bierspool but previously coached The Scarlets!
“It was like Christmas coming early”, admitted a delighted Boswell, “because we were something like at full strength and played with the passion that is part of the Quins’ game, especially in the way that we defended against a powerful Pembroke pack.”
Pembroke coach Geraint Lewis was disappointed by the result as he told us,
“The Quins were worthy winners because when we had long periods of pressure we handled poorly or took wrong options through over-eagerness and rushing things. They were up for it just a little more than we were on the day so deserved credit – but there is still plenty of the season to go and we can put this reversal right and move back into contention, where we belong!”
The first half was a scoreless war of attrition as Pembroke were strong in the set-pieces but the Quins’ back row of Danny Manning, Kevin Bratcher and especially Alex Pearce were superb.
Gareth Clarke played well on his return to action and it was Bratcher who set up the only score of the match with a typically powerful surge which was rounded off by delighted outside half Ben Hathaway, who also added the extra points for good measure.
Ben Hathaway - match-winning score for the Quins at Crickmarren
Saints scrum half Fraser Watson gets his pass away
Picture by Ceri Coleman-Phillips
Wasps win basement battle double
Llangwm 18 - St Davids 10
A ‘full set’ from Llangwm full back Steve Picton helped his side win a real war of attrition against fellow strugglers St Davids to complete the double over The Saints.
Picton landed a try, conversion, penalty and drop goal as his side edged home in heavy underfoot conditions at Pill Parks.
As expected given the nature of the fixture, the opening stages were tight, and referee Adrian Slade did an excellent job in controlling matters and allowing the game to flow.
The Saints enjoyed early pressure but were unable to capitalise on some close range lineouts, while at the other end, Llangwm second row Josh Hicks was bundled into touch near the corner flag.
Both sides went down to 14 as visiting second row Chris Jenkins and Llangwm winger Daniel Morgan saw yellow, before The Saints opened the scoring moments before half time when flanker Scott Riches rounded off some pressure out wide with a good finish.
But Llangwm came out firing after the break through the efforts of Ashley James, Gethin Thomas, Gareth Lawlor and Ian Griffiths, striking within a minute of the re-start, when No 10 Arthur Maulio-Martino capitalised on some good work by his forwards to plough over from close range.
Picton converted, and then also crossed from five metres out after taking a pop pass from scrum half Rhys Mason.
St Davids responded when winger Steve Regan went over out wide to reduce the score to 12-10 – but Picton then landed a penalty and a neat drop goal to give his side an eight point cushion.
The Saints tried to press late on but were unable to work good field position, and despite having Mason sin-binned late on, it was Llangwm who grabbed a second league win of the campaign.
Wasps go on the attack
Picture by Ceri Coleman-Phillips
Mariners win but it’s not plain sailing!
Milford Haven 30 - Neyland 23
Milford Haven picked up their expected home win over neighbours Neyland but it was anything but plain sailing for the Mariners as Steve Martin’s team kept plugging away against them to earn a bonus point – and were just short of another score that might have earned them further reward.
The Mariners stay top of the table with his their eighth win from ten starts, and they looked likely to run up another big score as they led 23-11 at half time thanks to good tries from No 8 Mark Wonnacott, winger Jimmy Thomas and second rower Archie Smithies to go with a pair of conversions and penalty from Craig Barnett.
Ashley Sutton landed two penalties and a late try by winger Luke Conbeer boosted the All Blacks’ hopes of a second-half comeback.
The Mariners seemed to seal victory as Wonnacott helped flanker Sam Dolling claim their fourth try, converted by Barnett, but Neyland had deserved tries from hooker Richard Jones and centre Martin, one converted by Sutton, to round off an entertaining tussle at The Observatory Field.
The only down-beat moment in an exciting game was an elbow injury to Neyland’s Ben Williams and we wish the talented young No 8 a speedy recovery.
Archie Smithies - try for Milford second row against Neyland
Neyland full back Patrick Bellerby kicks for touch
Cardis stay top after overcoming Tregaron
Cardigan 29 - Tregaron 13
Cardigan remained top as a result of their win over visiting Tregaron, picking up the vital bonus point for scoring tries and staying firmly in control after already leading 22-6 at the half-way mark.
Second row Rob Connolly and full back Alun Jenkins both maintained their recent try-scoring form as they crossed the whitewash alongside centre Emyr Jenkins in that first period, whilst scrum half Luke Rogers kicked two conversions and a penalty as the back row of Colin Davies, Kieran Hurley and skipper Llyr Griffiths were outstanding.
Tregaron’s response was a pair of penalties by No 10 Gwion Phillips and he also converted a second-half try from tight-head prop Don Pugh.
But Cardigan ran in the vital fourth try from centre Sion Hughes which Rogers goaled to help earn the Teifisiders a deserved seventh success of the season so far.
Emyr Harries - on the try sheet for Cardigan
Saints snatch victory in Carmarthenshire local derby
St Clears 27 - Laugharne 26
St Clears stay very much in contention for the section silverware as they held out for a bonus point win over neighbours Laugharne, who led at half time but lost ground before two late converted tries earned them two bonus points for scoring four tries and being with seven points of the opposition’s tally.
Winger Will Davies, flanker Matthew Owens, outside half Shane Morgan and centre Mike Georgiou all got on the try sheet for St Clears as talented young full back Geraint Jones slotted two conversions and a penalty.
For Laugharne there were also four tries shared by prop Rhys Thomas, No 10 Owen Thomas, centre Rodd Michael and winger Gareth Davies, plus three conversions from centre Tom Jameson – but the homesters held on for victory by the narrowest of margins!