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Butchers try can’t prevent Scarlets loss

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Scarlets Ladies Under 18s 10
Blues ladies Under 18s 12

Megan Davies: Whitland winger runs in the opening try (Pic. Riley Sports)

Megan Davies: Whitland winger runs in the opening try (Pic. Riley Sports)

THE SCARLETS Under 18’s girls lost their unbeaten record this season in a tough and uncompromising encounter against a physical Blues outfit last Sunday (13 Dec) at Llanelli Wanderers RFC. Both regions scored two tries a piece, with the only difference being an excellently taken conversion by Blues outside half Millie Williams.

The game opened with both defences to the fore, the physicality in the tackle from the both teams was immense and any scoring opportunities were limited. Indeed, it took until the final two minutes of the first half for the first score to be registered. After a spell of pressure from the Blues, the Scarlets girls managed to play away from their own 22, some slick handling along the back line, saw speedy Scarlets winger Megan Davies sprint clear of the cover Blues cover defence to score wide out.

Scrum half Lucy Packer narrowly missing the conversion sending the hosts in with a slender 5-0 lead. The Scarlets started the second half well, but gradually the power of the Blues pack began to take its toll. Powerful Blues No8 Georgia Fricker made some telling carries into the hitherto solid red defensive line, and gradually the Blues moved up the pitch. The Scarlets, not for the first time, were guilty of poor discipline at the contact area, and from one such infringement outside half Williams’s pinpoint accuracy gave the Blues a line out on the Scarlets 5-meter line.

To their credit the Scarlets halted the initial drive, but the ball was quickly recycled and Blues lock Mel Palmer powered over for the score. Williams added the vital extras to give the visitors a 5-7 lead. Once again the Scarlets came back into the game, with the forwards and backs finally managing to get their offloading game going. The inter-play between the Scarlets forwards and back was outstanding finally releasing replacement outside half Megan Beech to score the try; once again Packer pulled her kick just wide of the upright.

Unfortunately for the Scarlets this was as good as it got as the Blues forward pack took control. The Blues began to dominate territory and their powerful scrum continually took possession away from the home team. The Scarlets continued to defend valiantly, but finally the Blues spun the ball wide for winger Bethan Picton to score the decisive try with 10 minutes to go. Unfortunately, in the build up to the score, Scarlets back rower, Nia Walter sustained an injury to her neck and play was suspended while she received medical treatment and as the light worsened the game was brought to a premature end.

Thankfully Walters’s injury was not severe and was allowed home after an in-depth medical assessment. The Scarlets, failed to live up to their previous performances in the Championship and indeed for most of the game were lethargic in their play, but that is to take nothing away from the Blues girls who were outstanding throughout and thoroughly deserved the win. The Scarlets remain at the top of the Championship table going into the Christmas break thanks to their results in the previous rounds, but will have to improve on this performance when the take on the revitalized Ospreys when the two teams meet in the new year..

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Sport

Foel’s Championship dream halted

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FELINFOEL’s hopes of promotion to the WRU Championship were brought to an end on Sunday (May 12) as they were beaten in the play-offs by Ystalyfera.

Ystalyfera had won the first leg 34-28 on their home soil but Felinfoel were still very much in the tie and they had the backing of an 800-strong home crowd in the reverse fixture. Fans packed in to the ground and they witnessed an epic encounter.

Felinfoel held the lead at one time but their opponents hit back to seal a 20-30 win to win overall by 64 points to 48.

Felinfoel played some attractive rugby during the first half with wingers Eray Wilson and Elliot Dawe scoring tries wide out one of which was converted by Aled Roberts. Ystalyfera scored a penalty and a converted try making the half time score 12 points to 10.

Photos by Darren Harries

The second half opened brightly for Felinfoel with Roberts kicking a penalty and Wilson scoring a further try. With the score at 20 points to 10, matters were looking favourable for the home team.

It was at this stage that the Ystalyfera forwards took complete control of the match denying Felinfoel of any possession for the final 20mins of the match. With a strong scrummage and dynamic driving maul they continued to exert pressure onto the home team.

Ystalyfera were rewarded with a further two converted tries, penalty goal and drop goal and deserved their victory 20 points to 30, and promotion to the championship.

Both teams are to be congratulated in the way in which the game was played. Both sides gave their all and provided an entertaining encounter.

Both sets of supporters gave loud vocal support to each team and were sporting throughout the match.

At the end of the match Felinfoel coach Mike King who is leaving after two years in charge was given a rousing send off by players and supporters alike.

After the game Felinfoel took to twitter saying: “After another successful season, it’s time to say thank you. Thank you to all sponsors for supporting the club throughout the season once again. Without you we would not exist. Thank you to all the supporters who have been with us through thick and thin.

“Lastly, thank you to head coach Mike King who will be leaving us. He has set the foundations of the club and has turned this club around for the better. All at Felinfoel RFC can’t thank you enough. We wish you all the best in the future.”

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Sport

Morgan marches seconds home

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DAFEN Seconds earned the bragging rights over Llanelli Seconds on Saturday (May 11) as they cruised to an eight wicket win.

Dafen won the toss but elected to field and that looked to be a good decision as they bowled their opponents out for just 118 inside 22 overs.

Aadil Mukhtar finished with excellent figures of 5-21 while Oliver Evans supported well taking four wickets for the loss of 40 runs.

Needing just thirty overs of their reply, Dafen Seconds eased to victory as Jac Morgan finished not out on 64 to see his side over the line.

Photo by Darren Harries

The win for Dafen keeps them joint top of the table with Briton Ferry Town after two games while Llanelli sit bottom of Division 3 and are still searching for their first win.

On Saturday (May 18), Dafen Seconds are at home against Dyffryn while Llanelli Seconds are away to Neath thirds.

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Sport

Jones duo sink Bronwydd

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LLANGENNECH earned their first win of the season on Saturday (May 11) as they beat Bronwydd by 14 runs in a low scoring game.

Llangennech won the toss and elected to bat but they lost Chris Hickey early on when he was caught by Jacob Jenkinson off the bowling of Colin Tucker.

Matthew Jones scored 11 before he was caught and bowled by Tucker before David Williams was caught by Tom Gleeson off the bowling of Matthew Vaughan for a score of 14.

James Taube made the same score but was then caught by Phillip Howell off the bowling of Dafydd Morgan. Morgan also bowled Martin Gregory to leave Llangennech on 83-5.

Opener Scott Lloyd’s score of 30 had come off 127 balls and he was eventually caught by Vaughan off the bowling of Callum Collins-Davies.

Richard Clement was the third Llangennech batsman to make a score of 14 before getting out as he was caught by Jenkinson off the bowling of Gleeson.

Michael Jones was then run out before Gleeson claimed his second wicket as he had Simon Clement caught by Oliver Furneaux.

Vaughan then wrapped up the innings as he had Bav Patel caught by James Cale to leave Llangennech all out on 124. Photo by Darren Harries

Bronwydd’s opening pair of James Cale and Philip Howell shared 15 runs but Howell was out for a score of 8 to the bowling of Michael Jones.

Oliver Furneaux was next to fall when he was trapped leg before by Matthew Jones on a score of 11.

Chris Hickey then gave Owain Phillips his first wicket as he caught Jacob Jenkinson and the bowler then claimed his second as he had Cale caught by David Williams on a score of 17.

That left Bronwydd on 44-4 but Iwan Davies and Dafydd Morgan shared 40 runs for the fifth wicket to keep their side in the game.

Davies hit three fours and a six in his knock of 33 but he was then trapped leg before by Michael Jones. He then also bowled Callum Collins-Davies for a duck to reduce Bronwydd to 84-6.

Matthew Jones then had Dafydd Morgan caught on a score of 8 before then trapping Tom Gleeson leg before.

Hickey then took two more catches of Matthew Vaughan and Colin Tucker to give Matthew Jones his five-wicket haul and Bronwydd were all out for 110.

Gareth John had finished not out on 18 but it wasn’t enough for victory for the visitors.

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