Rugby Reports 1st December 2018

Haverfordwest secure clean lineout possession

Haverfordwest secure clean lineout possession


Feature Match:


Division Three (West) A:


Blues fend off Cardis challenge


Haverfordwest 17 - Cardigan 10

Matches between Haverfordwest and Cardigan are traditionally hard fought and this one was no exception as both teams tried to play running rugby in awful conditions before The Blues outlasted The Teifisiders to claim the verdict.

But it was Cardigan who made the early running as outside half Sion Edwards returned for his first full game after a lengthy spell out injured and sliced through a sleepy home defence for a 30-metre try which full back John Lumb converted.

Blues show attacking intent

The Blues showed their attacking intent as Terry Lovell and Karl Busch led several forward charges that also featured Jack Clancy, Gareth Phillips and Ashley George – and with Lee Summons and skipper Mikey Jones eager to take play wide there were some lovely moves featuring Craig Barnett, Dan Richards and Josh Atherton which ended with mishandling in the wet.

But their efforts were finally rewarded from closer range as Lovell, Jamie Zambas, Morgan Layton and Busch ploughed to the line before skipper Jones went over near the posts and Barnett added the conversion.

The Blues had other chances which came to nought before Cardigan again took the lead when skipper Lumb landed a penalty from 25 metres, albeit from the inside of the tight upright.

The Blues responded quickly, however, as Barnett kicked a simple penalty and with the teams sharing 20 points at half time it was The Blues who were more confident since they had second use of the elements.

Phillips claims vital try

They had the lions’ share of possession but Cardigan defended really well – but home No 8 Matty Phillips claimed the only score of the second period as his support play was rewarded with the only try, which Jones converted to give his side victory – and The Teifisiders received a bonus point for their part in a tough tussle.

Haverfordwest coach Steve Barnett said afterwards,

“We naturally hoped for a win by a bigger margin with a bonus point thrown in but I am pleased with the way that we continued our philosophy of playing positive rugby. When we tighten our defence a little and improve our handling we can take on anyone in the division and we can build on this result.”

Haverfordwest: Rhys Baker: Ben Alba; Craig Barnett; Dan Richards; Josh Atherton: Mikey Jones (Capt); Lee Summons: Ashley George; Jamie Zambas; Terry Lovell: Gareth Phillips; Karl Busch: Jack Clancy; Morgan Layton; Matty Phillips. Replacements: Matthew Clayton; Rhodri Harries; Gareth John; Tom Steiner; Jamie Barnett.

Cardigan: John Lumb (Capt): Rhodri Jenkins; Llyr Jones; Iwan John; Kevin Hurley: Sion Edwards; Tom Davies: Will Bryce; Dan Evans; Ben Hughes: Dean Harries; Sion Phillips: Gruff Lewis; Tom Taylor; Sion Hughes. Replacements: Elliott Day; Owain Rees; Toby Martin.

Cardigan mount an attack against The Blues

Cardigan mount an attack against The Blues


Championship Division:


Otters pushed all the way to Beddau double


Narberth 14 - Beddau 13

Narberth gained their expected home win to complete the double over Beddau, having beaten them 20-17 on the first day of the season – and this return tussle was no less combative before The Otters sealed victory by a single point after trailing 10-6 at half time.

The homesters had taken an early six-point lead through to penalties from Nick Gale but Beddau showed they were up for the challenge from a driving maul to the line from which centre Hywel Chatham emerged with the ball and also added the extras as well as notching a penalty before the oranges.

Chatham also added a second half penalty but he was matched by Gale – but it was prop Bradley Gale who proved to be the unlikely Narberth hero as he grabbed a close-range try as reward for his typical tenacity.

Gale missed the conversion but it mattered little in the final analysis because The Otters had done just enough to snatch the verdict – but their nervy supporters knew it had been might close!


Division One (West):


Forward power pays off for Preseli Men


Crymych 23 - Gorseinon 3

A huge forward effort laid the platform for Crymych to record a second successive league win as they deservedly saw off Gorseinon at Parc Lloyd Thomas.

On a heavy pitch, a predictably tight first half saw the Preseli Men lead 6-3; with young centre Ifan Phillips slotting two penalties to one from Gorseinon’s regular kicker Andrew Steele.

But in the second period home coach Randall Williams saw his side take control, and it was Phillips who set up the opening try with a cross field kick that full back Nick Bevan gathered to score.

Second row Matthew Freebury also crossed after sustained pressure following a close range scrum, with Phillips adding both conversions and a penalty as Crymych deservedly notched a third league success of the season.

Whitland flanker Ryan Morgan pounces for a try

Whitland flanker Ryan Morgan pounces for a try


Borderers beat basement battlers


Whitland 18 - Kidwelly 10

Whitland came from behind to seal a hard-fought victory against bottom of the table Kidwelly at Parc Llwyn Ty Gwyn.

The visitors are still awaiting their first win of the season and had Gareth Rees had his kicking boots with him this final result could have told a different story.

In cold, wet conditions Rees only landed one penalty from five attempts, but the Borderers dug deep to deservedly pick up their fifth victory of the campaign.

Kidwelly were good value for their 10-5 lead at half time as Rees landed an early close-range three pointer, and a few minutes later left winger Alan Squires was bundled into touch only a metre short of the line. Rees missed with two long range penalty attempts as he failed to punish the Borderers’ poor discipline.

Midway through the first period the visitors grabbed a well-worked try, after going through several phases, patience paid off, when scrum half Alex Hales darted over from close range for Rees to convert and it gave his side a comfortable 10-0 cushion.

On the 30 minute mark the Borderers worked the ball up field and some cracking driving play by the pack through Marc Jones, Raff Williams, Aaron Mayne and Jimmy Buirds set up a try from close range for outstanding flanker, Ryan Morgan who crashed over.

Outside half Nico Setaro was off target with the conversion so the Borderers trailed by five points at the interval.

Whitland came out firing on all cylinders in the second period with strong running centres Josh Thomas and Gino Setaro punching holes in the visitors’ midfield.

Inside the visitors’ 22 Marc Jones took a crucial strike against the head, and the pack surged forward as the Kidwelly forwards crumbled, and referee Rhodri Morgan awarded a penalty try which gave Whitland a slender 12-10 advantage.

The home team finished strongly as Setaro sealed victory by kicking two late successful penalties and coaches Gareth Bennett and Dan Mason will be proud of their side for grafting hard to get the all-important winning points.

Whitland: Rhys Schiavone, Liam Price, Gino Setaro, Josh Thomas, Llyr Ebsworth, Nico Setaro, Josh Thomas, Aaron Mayne, Marc Jones, Jimmy Buirds, Raff Williams, Jamie Thomas, Scott Buirds, Ryan Morgan, Jack Mason. Replacements: Gethin Lewis, Michael Ryan, Courtney Bowman, Ben Kirk, Adam Davies. 

Gino Setaro puts in a strong tackle

Gino Setaro puts in a strong tackle


Seasiders still seeking first success


Tenby United 13 - Dunvant 20

Tenby’s second half fightback wasn’t enough as they had to settle for a losing bonus point against Dunvant.

The Seasiders trailed 20-3 half time, with a penalty from Aaron James their only points as winger Matt Richards and scrum half Ben Ley crossed for the visitors whilst  Adam Williams-Parry had his kicking boots on to land two conversions, a drop goal and a penalty.

But in the second half the home side responded, and unconverted tries from Lewis Davies and replacement Matthew Morgan set up a tense finish.

But it wasn’t enough as Tenby still await a first league win of the season.

Matthew Morgan dives over for a try for Tenby

Matthew Morgan dives over for a try for Tenby
Picture by Susan McKehon


Division Two (West):


Scarlets suffer in second half


Pembroke 17 - Mumbles 24

After leading 17-9 half time, Pembroke were left wondering how they lost at home to a Mumbles’ side six places lower in the section table, as the visitors came back well in the second half.

The Scarlets went 5-0 up as skipper Scott Powell touched down from a driving lineout, and No 8 Sam Smith went over twice thereafter, once after picking up from the base of a scrum and then rounding off a good period of inter play between forwards and backs. Brother Toby added a conversion – but three penalties from Tom Richards kept the visitors in it.

But in the second half The Scarlets fell foul of the referee, and yellow cards to prop Jonny Palmer and Toby Smith, plus winger Barrie John being high tackled when seemingly heading to the corner, proved crucial.

The away side had tries from Rob Sutton and Tom Powell – and a conversion and penalty from Richards, to notch a fightback win.

“From 17-9 up at half time we should have won it,” admitted Pembroke coach Geraint Lewis.

 “But we were left a little bewildered by some of the second half decisions. We’ll move on though to another tough tussle in a big game with Loughor next week.”


Seagulls are still slow starters


Tycroes 29 - Fishguard & Goodwick 14

Fishguard & Goodwick made their traditionally slow start to matches as they conceded seven points in the opening moments and were on the back foot for much of the time thereafter as they showed what they are really made of with two very good tries of their own.

Powerful No 8 Steff Jones powered over for that opening score which was converted by scrum half Lee Evans – but The Seagulls levelled matters when No 9 Andrew Williams took a quick tap penalty and sliced over the whitewash before half back partner Alun George added the extra points.

The only other score in the period came when Evans slotted a penalty to give the home side a 10-7 interval lead – but they added another vital try straight from the restart as winger Darren Jones rounded off a sweeping move.

In a bad patch for The Seagulls they also conceded further tries to full back Aled Rhys Jones and outstanding outside half Dean Bromham, both converted by Evans as Tycroes put the result beyond doubt.

There was still time for Fishguard to score an excellent try by replacement centre Lewis Davies – and Welsh Deaf Team flanker Ryan Foot also came off the bench to make his first-team debut.


Division Three (West) A:


Depleted league leaders lose at Laugharne


Laugharne 22 - Neyland 10

Laugharne’s forward power eventually told in a titanic tussle with Neyland after the All Blacks arrived somewhat depleted in the front row, with regular second row Mark ‘Russell’ James moving up to prop.

But still The Black Blacks took the lead when winger Delme Bateman dived over in the corner just two minutes in before the Cocklemen utilised their advantage in the scrum and it was from this platform that No 8 Mikey Williams went over for an unconverted try, before centre Tom Jameson put them ahead with a penalty.

As played swept forward and backward it was the All Blacks who led at half time as Patrick Bellerby came into the line from full back and crossed out wide, putting his team 10-8 up.

The visitors had second row Nathan Banner yellow-carded early in the second half but survived the 10 minute period and with eight minutes to go, were still hanging on.

But then a series of scrums eventually yielded a penalty try for Laugharne, and although Neyland responded with some pressure of their own after home scrum half Gethin Jones was sin binned – right at the death Bellerby’s kick was charged down and No 10 Owain Thomas pounced to score.

Jameson converted to seal a battling win, although The All Blacks would have left feeling they had done enough for at least a losing bonus point.

Quins spread the ball wide

Quins spread the ball wide


Hicks leads Wasps’ charge at Bierspool


Pembroke Dock Harlequins 5 - Llangwm 22

It wasn’t a classic, but Llangwm didn’t care as they notched their second win of the season against a Pembroke Dock team again battling against player unavailability.

After a scrappy first half, The Wasps led 5-0 thanks to an interception try from flanker Ashley James, who impressed alongside veteran centre Robbie Neil and No 8 Josh Hicks.

Indeed it was Hicks who got his side’s second try after the break by gathering his own grubber kick and full back Luke Hayman converted – although the Quins promptly responded when No 8 Hywel Bakes ploughed over in the corner from a quickly-taken tap penalty.

But Hicks then powered over again following a super 40-metre run after picking up from the base of a scrum, Hayman again converting, and the latter also added a late penalty as Llangwm were able to celebrate a rare away win in difficult conditions.

Pembroke Dock Harlequins: Ben Gibby, Dan Donovan, Henry Lawrence, Jack Brown, Liam Smith, Aaron Cookson, Josh Brown, Darren Potter, Jordan Palmer, George Belmaine, Martin Culley, Sam James, Liam Scourfield, Nick Drewett, Liam Scourfield. Replacements: Will Nicot, Ben Hathaway, Gary Burns.

Llangwm: Luke Hayman, Iwan Griffiths, Louis Murphy, Robbie Neill, Joe Lewin, Jonathan Lloyd, Ian Griffiths, Ieuan Power, Gethin Thomas, Gavin Jones, David Reynolds, Craig Grice, James Lewis, Ashley James, Josh Hicks. Replacements:  Jojo Francis, Dan Hughes, Steven Rees, Dan Morgan, Spencer Rourke.


Saints struggle as Llan grab eight tries


St Davids 3 - Llanybydder 52

St Davids showed an improvement after shipping a century of points against Neyland the previous week – but still only had a Matty Mcleod penalty to show for their efforts as they were well beaten by Llanybydder.

The visitors responded well to that Haverfordwest loss last week with eight tries as Rhys Morris, Ross Holder (2), Liam Fitzpatrick, Bleddyn Jones (2), Richard Davies and Llyr Tobias all crossed the whitewash.

Steff Richards added six conversions as Llanybydder kept in touch with the sides at the top, while the Saints could at least reflect on a more competitive display despite conceding another half century of points.


Aber maintain their run of form


Aberaeron 31 - Tregaron 0

Aberaeron maintained their run of good form with this comfortable win over Tregaron but must have been a little disappointed as they couldn’t manage a bonus point as the visitors played better than their bottom spot might suggest.

Aber had tries from flanker Aaron Lewis, scrum half Dafydd Llewellyn and full back Morgan Llewellyn alongside both conversions and four penalties by Rhodri Jenkins as they retain their interest in a promotion place at the end of the season.