Rugby Reports 2nd March 2019



Disjointed Otters lose out to students


Cardiff Met 29 - Narberth 21

Jake Jenkins - try in defeat for NarberthNarberth missed out on the chance to move into second place as they made the journey to Cardiff Met and returned with nothing to show for their match against the students after a sub-par first half saw them trail by 24 unanswered points.

So The Otters ended a run of three positive results and dropped down to fourth as Cardiff Met leap-frogged over them in the table after almost total control in the first period saw them claim tries for Barry Karrea, Chris Lewis and Dan Kelway, all converted by Harry Johnston alongside a penalty after the visitors lost winger Will Lewis injured early on and No 8 Ritchie Rees later in the game.

Whatever coach Sean Gale said at the break it certainly had some effect as his team raised the tempo with good tries from Kieran Jones, Yannick Parker and Jake Jenkins, all converted by Jonathan Rogers.

Jones played well in the centre with Jack Price in a productive period but Cardiff Met secured a bonus point as Ellis Bevan added their fourth try to ensure victory against a very disappointed Narberth camp.

Jake Jenkins - try in defeat for Narberth


Division One (West):


Mighty Borderers beat table-toppers


Whitland 24 - Felinfoel 14 

Gino Setaro - vital try for WhitlandIt was a big display from Whitland at Parc Llwyn Ty Gwyn as they turned over runaway leaders Felinfoel with a cracking all-round performance that gave them revenge for a 39-20 away defeat.

The Borderers outscored the Llanelli side by three tries to one to win 24-14 and leave coach Gareth Bennett more than satisfied.

“The first half especially was back and fore against a very tough Felinfoel side,” he said.

“But it was a great squad effort and all the replacements made a big impact.”

It didn’t start well for the home side as Foel winger Dan Thomas broke a tackle on half way and made it to the corner to score.

The home side soon responded though as a prolonged spell of possession was rounded off with winger Sean Coles going over and Nico Setaro converted.

The lead was extended further when No 9 Adam Davies sniped off the back of a maul to score from 22 metres and Setaro landed a touchline conversion – and then he and opposite number Aled Roberts exchanged penalties to leave Whitland 17-8 up at half time.

Felinfoel edged their way back into it second half though as Roberts kicked two penalties, the second of which after a yellow card was given to home skipper Marc Jones, to cut the deficit to three points.

But with the Buirds brothers Scott and Jimmy again impressing and Tom Finucane adding real impetus off the bench, Whitland sealed a terrific win when centre Gino Setaro broke free in midfield and made it to the line despite a last-ditch tap tackle, and cousin Nico converted.

Whitland: Dan Evans, Scott Lloyd, Gino Setaro, Josh Thomas, Sean Coles, Nico Setaro, Adam Davies, Aaron Mayne, Marc Jones, Jimmy Buirds, Dai Ebsworth, Courtney Bowman, Jack Mason, Ryan Morgan, Scott Buirds. Replacements: Gethin Lewis, Tom Finucane, Ben Kirk, James Thomas, Scott Candler.

Gino Setaro - vital try for Whitland


Preseli Men battle to deserved victory


Crymych 10 - Llanelli Wanderers 0

It wasn’t pretty at Crymych but after a scoreless first half, the Preseli Men dug deep in torrential weather to score two second half tries and see off Llanelli Wanderers.

Inevitably the game was won up front and the front row of Steff Harries, namesake Aled and Ryan Rees set the tone with big shifts.

Crymych were also boosted by the presence of Ryan Bean in the pack but it was his second row partner Osian Davies who finally broke the deadlock with a second half try.

The Preseli Men did have chances to take shots at goal and persistently opted for the corner, and it eventually paid dividends when No 8 Guto Davies crashed over for another unconverted score.

“The boys really ground that win out,” said Adrian Howells, “and it shows what we can do in this division.”

Crymych: Nick Bevan, Alun Jenkins, Ifan Phillips, Tomi Jones, Laurence Headlam, Gareth Davies, Dafydd Phillips, Steff Harries, Aled Harries (capt), Ryan Rees, Matthew Freebury, Ryan Bean, Osian Davies, Sion Colella, Guto Davies. Replacements: Rhys Richards, Llew Rees, Dafydd Vaughan, Tomos Lewis, Tomos Phillips.


Seasiders miss out in basement battle


Tenby 22 - Kidwelly 31

Tenby went into this clash with high hopes of a first league win of the season as they hosted a Kidwelly side just a place above them in the table, but it wasn’t to be as too many basic errors saw the Seasiders well beaten.

The visitors kicked off with a strong wind behind them and yet Tenby did well to be just 13-8 down at the break as impressive second young second row Tom Barrass went over for a try and No 10 Lloyd Thomas kicked a penalty. For Kidwelly, winger Stuart Morris crossed and full back Gareth Rees nailed a conversion and two penalties.

So Gareth Thomas’ team started the second half with high hopes but were dealt a cruel blow as heavy pressure on the Kidwelly line ended when away winger Allan Squires intercepted a pass and went the length of the field to score.

His fellow winger Arwel Rees then soon raced down the line for a try of his own and then to compound matters, it was Squires who again counter-attacked from a turnover to touch down. Rees couldn’t add any second half conversions but did slot a penalty into the breeze.

But Tenby did at least fightback late on and hooker Dan Allen took a pop pass off fellow front rower Huw Evans to score, and replacement Harry Rossiter added the conversion on debut.

And then from the final play referee Daryl Richards awarded Tenby a penalty try – but the Seasiders were left rueing not making use of the elements in the second half.

Tenby United: Aaron James, Joe Owen, Shane Rossiter, Moritz Neumann, Jordan Asparassa, Lloyd Thomas, Ben Pugh, Huw Evans, Dan Allen, Rob Luly, Tom Barrass, Luke Dedman, Jack Broadhurst, Roy Osborne, Mike Davies. Replacements: Ethan Morgan, Charlie Patching, Rob Tuttle, Jack Tucker, Harry Rossiter.

Top end of the table action from Crickmarren

Top end of the table action from Crickmarren
Pictures kindly supplied by Dafydd Palme


Division Two (West):


Scarlets suffer surprise home defeat


Pembroke 17 - Pontyberem 21

Pembroke were knocked off the top of Division Two (West) as they went down to a narrow home defeat against a Pontyberem side which used its powerful pack as the platform for victory.

Pembroke on the chargeThe Scarlets conceded the verdict after leading 17-12 with 75% of the game gone and their opponents sit threateningly in third spot only a point behind but with a game in hand – as Penclawdd head the table again after their bonus-point win over Fishguard.

Pontyberem had experienced forwards like Wayne Williams, the ex-Narberth back rower and Bryn Griffiths, who was previously with Llanelli and Llanybydder, and the visitors served notice of intent with an early try from prop James Prosser which was converted by Dom Sauro.

Pembroke were soon playing well however, as Sam Smith forced his way over in the corner and brother Toby added the difficult conversion – but missed the target when Sean Dalling raced clear for a cracking Scarlets’ try.

Sauro reduced the interval deficit with a penalty but Pembroke increased their advantage to seven points as young winger Tom Harding-Jones bamboozled several defenders on a run from half way.

But as conditions worsened Pontyberem sucked The Scarlets into an attritional mode of play and another Sauro penalty was followed by a Pontyberem try for winger Tim Lloyd which put them ahead before Sauro had the final word with his third penalty.

It was a blow for The Scarlets but they still have to travel to Pontyberem and are still in the race for the section silverware – but know they cannot afford to lose any other tough tussles like this one!

Pembroke on the attack against Pontyberem

‘Cocklemen’ take the points as Seagulls slump in first half


Penclawdd 26 - Fishguard & Goodwick 7

Andrew Williams - grabbed Fishguards only tryIt was a similar story as in other away matches for Fishguard and Goodwick as they found themselves 21-0 adrift at half time, after arriving late because of traffic hold-ups en route and having limited chance to warm up before conceding three converted tries.

They did play much better after half time as Simon James, Gavin Walsh and the rest of the pack upped the tempo but all they could muster was an excellent score just after the restart from a period of sustained pressure which saw scrum half Andrew Williams touch down and half-back partner Kial Keane added the extra points.

The Cocklemen’s first-half scorers were outside half Ryan Jones, Rhys Eaton and Lee Gunnell, all converted by Tom Owens – and a try from a controlled drive claimed by Matthew Evans sealed their success in a game where Fishguard can look back on a positive share of possession but a failure to turn pressure into points!

Andrew Williams - grabbed Fishguard's only try


Division Three (West) A:


Mariners bounce back to winning ways


Milford Haven 17 - Cardigan 3

Centre Dan Jenkins played a key role as Milford Haven bounced back from that defeat to Llanybydder, although there was some frustration for Nathan Williams and Co as they failed to pouch a bonus point.

But they still moved 13 points clear of Aberaeron (having played two games more) and in awful conditions, it was Jenkins who got the ball rolling after breaking clear in his own 22 and nearly going all the way to the posts - and from the pressure that followed flanker David Round went over for a typical support try. Dan McClelland’s simple conversion was charged down though.

With the wind and rain at their backs Cardigan responded through an Emyr Harries penalty but Milford scored again when good handling in the conditions put winger Lee Riley over in the corner.

And then further good interplay led to the third try and it was Jenkins who again broke from deep and this time made the line himself, and McClelland converted to make it 17-3 half time.

The Mariners pushed hard at the start of the second half for that fourth try and props Williams and Adam Rees were both prominent in charges towards the posts while centre Dan Birch also stood out in the centre.

Cardigan held firm though under heavy pressure and then took things to the Mariners, with their pack well led by skipper Tom Taylor and indeed, it was The Teifisiders who finished the stronger as they were camped on the Milford line for the final few minutes.

But in the end both sides had to settle for a scoreless second half that was inevitably error- strewn in the weather – but at least The Mariners could claim a double, having won 32-12 at Cardigan in good weather earlier in the campaign.

Milford Haven: Steve Martin, Lee Riley, Dan Jenkins, Dan Birch, Garin Gardner, Efan Morgan, Dan McClelland, Nathan Williams, Luke Ryan, Adam Rees (capt), David Round, Chris Hall, Ben Groves, Zac Davies, Sam Dolling. Replacements: Mike Cockburn, Andrew Ling, Dai Sweeny, James Trueman, Dean McSparron.

Cardigan: Llyr Jones, Rhydian Jenkins, Sion Hughes, Iwan John, Ceryth Griffiths, Emyr Harries, Tom Dunne, Will Brice, Luke Palmer-Davies, Andrew Fletcher, Dean Harries, Sion Phillips, Tom Taylor (capt), Bedwyr Davies, Colin Davies. Replacements: Elliot Dry, Toby Neilson, Ifan Morgan, Grufudd Lewis.

Scrum time at the Obs, Milford Haven set against Cardigan

Scrum time at the Obs, Milford Haven set against Cardigan


Four-try Evans grabs 36 points in big All Blacks’ win


Neyland 66 - St Davids 0

George Evans collected an impressive 36 points for NeylandIt wasn’t quite the three figure scoreline Neyland put on St Davids earlier in the season but it was still a convincing win for the All Blacks as George Evans starred at the Athletic Ground, the young No 10 scoring 36 points in total, including four of his team’s ten tries.

Both sides were depleted but it was Evans who got the scoring going when he crossed three minutes in, and further first half tries followed from winger Henry McBeth (2), full back Patrick Bellerby, prop Luke Griffiths-Dawes, and Evans again. The latter converted all seven scores to make it 42-0 at the break.

He also added the extras to both of his second half tries before skipper and centre George Williams and flanker Iestyn Evans also crossed.

“Both teams were missing boys. We scored some good tries but fair play to St Davids they had a bare 15 and kept battling,” said Neyland team manager Peter Davies.

Neyland: Patrick Bellerby, Henry McBeth, George Williams capt), Alex Codd, Mark Riley, Jack Partridge, George Evans, Jack Richards, Luke Griffiths-Dawes, Craig Power, Sam Cataki, Mark Russell, Chris Busby, Iestyn Evans, Owain Evans, Ben Williams. Replacements: Simon Phillips, John Tennick.

St Davids: Luke Brooks, Ewan Kimsley, Dan Ridge, Rhys Morgan, Adam Williams, Matty McCleod, Harvey Godkin, Will Davies, Rhys Price, Adam Williams, Ben Evans, Rhys ‘Loshin’ Price (capt), Josh Strangward, George Evans, Anthony Davies.

No 10 George Evans collected an impressive 36 points for Neyland


Laugharne pouch deserved double


Laugharne 35 - Tregaron 5

Owain Thomas - another try for LaugharneLaugharne completed a comfortable double over Tregaron as they followed up a 27-6 away win earlier in the campaign with this deserved 35-5 victory on their own turf.

The Laugharnees led by 14-0 at the break thanks to tries from centre Tom Jameson and winger Gareth Spiers, both converted by Steff Davies as reward for being on top but with both sides missing other chances in quite difficult weather conditions.

Tregaron did manage a solitary unconverted try by prop Dorian Pugh after the interval but by then Laugharne were already looking good as further tries came from Steff Davies and Owen Thomas, both converted by Steff Davies before the in-form kicker completed a 100% record when No 8 Mikey Williams powered over for Laugharne’s final try late in the match and a comfortable fifth place in the section table.


Owain Thomas - another try for Laugharne


Match off at Pembroke Road

Haverfordwest v Llanybydder – Match postponed

**Llanybydder unable to raise a team!


Welsh Bowl Quarter-Final:


Aber just miss out on last-four place to table-topping Oakdale


Oakdale 15 - Aberaeron 3

Aberaeron put in a terrific group shift in their attempt at reaching the Welsh National Bowl final but in the final analysis found the greater experience of the home side, who sit atop Division Three (East), a key factor.

Aber were caught early on by an unconverted try by the Gwent side’s Gareth Davies but as they settled in they claimed three points from a well-struck penalty by Rhodri Jenkins but were unable to capitalise on their superiority where captain Alex Danton and his fellow forwards dominated the set pieces only to be repelled by a dour defence.

Strong running by the midfield combination of Ollie Sawyer and Tom Slinger continually made progress and full back Morgan Llewelyn was unfortunate not to capitalise on more than one occasion

Aberaeron also enjoyed another considerable period of pressure where they were camped in the opposition’s half but towards the end of the period they were caught out by a second try by Dai Tovey to trail 10-3 at the interval.

It was a similar story in the second half as Oakdale absorbed some pressure and then grabbed a third unconverted try, this time by James Green, which settled the issue in the home team’s favour, leaving Aberaeron to reflect on what might have been.


Floodlit friendly rugby:


Williams’ late try secures Palmer Cup for Pembroke


Pembroke Seconds 38 - Llangwm 3 
(Pembroke win 48-46 on aggregate)


A last-ditch try by Pembroke’s No 8 Aaron Williams, his third of the match, saw The Scarlets retain the Palmer Cup at the expense of a Llangwm team which had gone into this second leg at Crickmarren with a huge 33-point advantage.

They had beaten The Scarlets’ second string by 43-10 when the teams met at Pill Parks very early in the campaign and were eager to win the trophy competed for annually by the clubs to commemorate their Palmer family links.

But whatever home coaches Clive ‘Tosh’ Rowlands and Simon Edwards said beforehand it had the desired effect as their mixture of a few old timers and talented youngsters were well on top to run in five tries in the first half, four of them converted by full back Lewis Davies.

Scarlet tries come thick and fast

It was No 10 Iorrie Roberts who scored the first converted try before winger Matthew ‘Daffy’ Lewis added another five points as he used his pace to good effect. Aaron Williams then grabbed two converted tries with another by winger Darcy Langston sandwiched neatly in between and also converted.

It meant that there was still all to play for after the oranges under the second-pitch lights at Pembroke and The Wasps’ pack, ably led by skipper Gethin Thomas from their hooker berth and No 8 Josh Hicks, made sure that the visitors had their share of the chances in a tense second period.

Late scores settle the issue

But there were no further points until the last five minutes, when Llangwm outside half Luke Hayman slotted a simple penalty after a rousing rumble by their pack, in which James Lewis, Will Scriven, Gavin Jones and Ashley James joined Rhys Thomas, Jason Mock, Hicks and Thomas had all linked well with scrum half Ian Griffiths.

It looked as if The Wasps might snatch the verdict but there was still time for the likes of Jim Brace, Harry Dawe, Jamie Brayford and Danny James to help The Scarlets to one last attack from which Aaron Williams again ploughed over the whitewash – and although the conversion failed it mattered little because The Palmer Cup remained firmly ensconced in the Crickmarren Clubhouse after an entertaining clash!

Pembroke Seconds: Lewis Davies: Matthew Lewis; Elliott Evans; Owain Johns; Darcy Langston: Iorrie Roberts; Rhys Cadogan: Jamie Brayford; Sean Beynon; Tim Sharp: Dom Colman; Harry Dawe: Danny James; Jim Brace; Aaron Williams. Replacements: Luke Williams; Marc Jones; Nathan Morris.

Llangwm: Ewan Griffiths: Dan Morgan; Lewis Murphy; JoJo Francis; Spencer Rourke: Luke Hayman; Ian Griffiths: Will Scriven; Gethin Thomas; Gavin Jones: Ashley James; Jason Mock: James Lewis; Rhys Thomas; Josh Hicks.