LLANDOVERY travelled to the Parc y Scarlets desperate for a victory to say goodbye to departing coach Lyndon Lewis after they had failed to secure a victory in his final home game against Ebbw Vale in the previous round of fixtures. Lewis leaves at the end of the season to take the role of assistant coach at Aberavon, a club for which he is a former captain, and will be replaced at the Towy Valley side by his Assistant Euros Evans.
Llanelli came into the game hoping to give their fans something to smile about at the end of a dismal campaign. Their end of season form until this game had been particularly poor having failed to win in their last six games, shipping over two hundred and forty points in the process. It was possible for the Reds to overtake their Scarlets’ region counterparts to finish eighth in the table before kick off, however they needed to secure a bonus point win of more than eight points.
As it was Llandovery outscored their hosts by four tries to three and also got within in seven of their score to secure two bonus points of their own (one losing and one four try) to ensure they kept eighth place, though it will be of little consolation to either side as both will have had desires on making the top half back in September.
Llandovery’s season has been blighted by regular bouts of ill-discipline on the field and today was no different. Despite having the majority of the possession and at times playing some fine running rugby, it was the award of three yellow cards, two of which came inside the same minute that cost the Drovers the full quota of points once more. Incoming coach Euros Evans will have recognised this as one of the key areas the side needs to improve for the next campaign.
To kick Llandovery when they were down it was one of their own, fullback Gareth Walters, a graduate from the Drovers academy that led Llanelli to what seemed an unlikely victory as he produced seventeen points. With one try, a one hundred percent conversion rate and two penalties he almost single handedly dragged his sorry Llanelli side to a much needed, but undeserved victory, their first since early February.
Owain Morgan also grabbed a try for Llanelli to give his side a 20-12 lead at the interval, but the game was to be turned on its head by its stand out player, winger Aaron Warren. He added to his first half score to complete a fine hat-trick in the second half and was a constant menace to the hosts with his powerful running and slight of foot. If Llandovery’s centres had noticed how much mayhem he was causing, as everyone else in the ground had, they may have given him more ball rather than squander chance after chance when the overlap beckoned.
Their failure to convert these chances into points came back to bite them in a way that is all too familiar in sport. Their ill-discipline saw two yellow cards inside a minute with two of their pack, flanker Shaun Miles and lock Matthew Harbut, being sent to the stand for continued infringing at the breakdown, the most criminal offence for a forward, on par with spilling a restart.
Llanelli looked to make their extra men count up front and with the extra power they now possessed they worked an opening for number eight Morgan to crash over and secure his second and his sides third of the game out wide in the corner. With the imperious Walters notching the conversion the Reds had secured what had seemed an unlikely win for the majority of the contest.
Both sides will welcome new faces and say goodbye to old in the close season in a bid to improve their fates for the next campaign and on this showing, they are some way off matching the levels reached by the likes of Pontypridd, Cross Keys and Ebbw Vales this campaign.
15 Gareth Walters 14 Kyle Evans 13 Andrew Rees-Spowart 12 Richard Thomas11 Elliot Dawe 10 Stuart Morris 9 Jon Rogers 1 Rhys Fawcett 2 Taylor Davies 3 Gareth Havard 4 Adam Powell © 5 Ed Price 6 Liam Puckett 7 Shaun Edwards 8 Owain Morgan
15 Mike Evans 14 Rhys Williams 13 Matthew Jacobs 12 Rhodri Jones 11 Aaron Warren 10 Steffan Marshall 9 Lee Rees: 1 Jamie Kaijaks 2 Luke Lewis 3 Greg Cunniffe 4 Bryn Griffiths 5 Matthew Harbut 6 Phil Day (captain) 7 Richard
Scarlets’ grassroots clubs show community spirit in delivering vital food packages
Scarlets community clubs have been working together to help deliver vital food packages across the region.
Volunteers from grassroots clubs and WRU girls hubs across Ceredigion, Carmarthenshire and Pembrokeshire have been helping take the food packages to vulnerable members of society who are self-isolating during the Covid-19 pandemic.
The clubs have teamed up with the Scarlets Community Foundation — the charity arm of the Scarlets — and Carmarthen-based food wholesaler Castell Howell, while Scarlets players Osian Knott, Kieran Hardy, Ryan Conbeer and Jac Morgan have also lent their hand to the operation.
More than 300 packages were due to be delivered on Monday and Tuesday (April 6 & April 7), with the initiative highlighting that even without any action on the field, rugby clubs remain at the heart of their community.
Scarlets Community Foundation manager Caroline Newman said: “We have been overwhelmed with the support that we have received from local clubs, the number of people prepared to volunteer to help the most vulnerable in our communities has been touching.
“People’s reasons for requesting packs have often been heart-wrenching and it really has made us appreciate what we have.
“The foundation has worked closely with Castell Howell to make sure the packages are ready to go to those whose need is greatest, managing to turn things around pretty quickly and I’d like to say a huge thank you to everyone involved in making this happen, our funder, Castell Howell, all the clubs, our helpline volunteer and the foundation members.
“Great teamwork which has made me proud to be part of the fantastic community that rugby creates.”
Here are the rugby clubs and WRU girls rugby hubs taking part in the initiative
Aberaeron, Aberystwyth, Amman Utd, Ammanford, Burry Port, Betws, Bynea, Cardigan, Cefneithin, Felinfoel, Fishguard & Goodwick, Furnace Utd, Haverfordwest, Kidwelly, Llandeilo, Llandovery, Llandybie, Llanelli Wanderers, Llangennech, Llangwm, Merched Mynydd Mawr, Milford Haven, Narberth, New Dock Stars, Newcastle Emlyn, Neyland, Penybanc, Pontyates, St Clears, Stradey Sospans, Tenby Utd, Tumble, Tycroes, Whitland, Yr Hendy.
Wales v Scotland postponed
WALES’ Six Nations match at home to Scotland on Saturday has been postponed due to the coronavirus outbreak.
The two other Six Nation fixtures had already been postponed and no date has been confirmed to complete the 2020 Championship.
The Welsh Rugby Union had insisted earlier on Friday the game would “go ahead as planned”.
A WRU statement read: “The Welsh Rugby Union has maintained an open dialogue with, and continued to seek advice and direction from, the National Assembly for Wales and other stakeholders, including the Six Nations, on this fast-moving issue.
“Whilst medical advice remains consistent, we have decided that it is in the best interests of supporters, players and staff to fall in line with recent measures taken across the UK and global sports industries.
“The WRU would like to thank all parties for their counsel on the subject and will make further announcements with respect to rescheduling the fixture in the coming days.
“Every effort has been made to stage this game and we appreciate that individuals will have been inconvenienced. Given the fluid and unprecedented nature of this issue a postponement became the only viable option.”
Domestic football at all levels in Wales suspended
THE FOOTBALL Association of Wales has today (13 March) taken the decision to suspend domestic football at all levels in Wales with immediate effect until April 4 due to the COVID-19 outbreak.
The intention at this time will be to resume the football schedule depending on the medical advice and conditions from the relevant authorities at that time.
The FAW is fully aware of the impact this will have on the domestic game but the health and safety of all fans, players, volunteers and stakeholders are of paramount importance.
The FAW will continue to monitor this situation on a day-by-day basis and will continue to provide updates when appropriate.
News1 week ago
Welsh pet food company donates food to animal charity battling to survive coronavirus lockdown
News2 weeks ago
Adapting to change Welsh food producers rise to the challenge of a ‘New World’
News2 weeks ago
Police Commissioner emphasises that travel restriction still apply across the force area
News2 weeks ago
How the British Red Cross is supporting the new volunteer prescription delivery scheme in Wales
News6 days ago
Protecting the protectors: An inside look into the service supporting the frontline of Dyfed-Powys Police
News5 days ago
New Llanelli Policing Hub and Custody Suite
News2 weeks ago
Two local children have become #1 best-selling authors on Amazon – internationally!
News2 weeks ago
Dyfed-Powys police handed out almost 220 Covid-19 fines over the Bank Holiday weekend