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Williams’ return can’t stop Connacht

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Connacht celebrate: Another try for the hosts

Connacht celebrate: Another try for the hosts

Guinness Pro12

Connacht 30

Scarlets 17

WALES fullback Liam Williams made his first appearance since the World Cup as the Pro12 leaders Scarlets slipped to defeat at Connacht.

The home side ended a run of four straight Pro12 defeats with a bonus-point victory after two yellow cards in the second half cost the visitors.

Connacht lead 13-0 at half-time thanks to two tries from Jake Heenan as they exploited scrum dominance.

A DTH van der Merwe score cut Connacht’s lead to 13-10 but another line-out drive saw Denis Buckley touch down after two Scarlets sin-binning’s.

Rodney Ah You’s try sealed Connacht’s bonus point before Gareth Owen’s late reply.

Connacht’s win moves them level on points with the Scarlets but Edinburgh could move top later on Saturday if they win away to Cardiff Blues.

Jack Carty’s early penalty put Connacht ahead before the home fly half’s superb kick for the corner set up Heenan’s first try in the 22nd-minute.

Heenan’s crucial second try in the 38th minute was a carbon copy and gave Connacht a massive boost as they prepared to face into a strong wind in the second period.

The Scarlets looked to be right back in the game within five minutes of the restart as Van der Merwe finished off an excellent move but Aled Thomas’ knock-on straight from the restart gave the momentum back to Connacht.

Carty slotted a penalty before Scarlets forwards Phil John and Tom Price were both sin-binned.

With the Scarlets reduced to 13 players, man of the match Buckley notched a third line-out maul try for Connacht and Ah You’s touchdown in the 65th minute secured the home team’s bonus point.

Owen’s 74th-minute try, converted by Thomas, gave the Scarlets a late opportunity to chase a losing bonus point but Connacht held on to move level on points with the Welsh outfit.

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Community

Scarlets’ grassroots clubs show community spirit in delivering vital food packages

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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.

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Sport

Wales v Scotland postponed

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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.”

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Sport

Domestic football at all levels in Wales suspended

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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. 

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