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Quins push league hopefuls close

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Drink break: Quins relax after a tough first half

Drink break: Quins relax after a tough first half

Principality Premiership

Cross Keys 38

Carmarthen Quins 20

CROSS KEYS completed the double over Carmarthen Quins in the Principality Premiership on Saturday afternoon, crossing for 5 tries and securing a bonus point in the process.

Playing down the slope, Keys went on the attack from the start and following a lineout just inside the Quins twenty-two the ball was moved from one side of the pitch to the other and found it’s way to wing Mathew Powell, who benefitted from an excellently created overlap to cross in the scoreboard corner to give Keys the lead in the 5th minute. Full back Owen Howe was unable to add the conversion from out wide.

Keys continued to attack with great intent and after a string of close range lineouts were impeded illegally by the visitors and the Quins were reduced to 14 men after 14 minutes of play as prop Nathan Williams, who appeared for Keys from the Dragons several time in the past was sent to the sin bin after he pulled down a driving maul close to his own try line.

The one man advantage was soon to benefit Keys greatly when from a lineout just 5 metres out the ball was worked back in field and found its way in to the arms of Keys hooker Darren Hughes who dragged several bodies over the line with him near the posts to cross for Keys 2nd try of the day with a little over 15 minutes played. Owen Howe this time added the conversion as Keys were, at this stage full value for their lead.

With Quins still down to 14 men and unable to create any real chances, Keys continued to attack from across the field and they looked almost certain to extend their lead further when outstanding flanker Ieuan Jones launched a chip and chase in the middle of the park, and midway in the Quins half. Jones looked to have created the scoring chance to gather his own kick but he appeared to have been hacked down near the posts as the try looked almost certain. Instead of penalising the Quins defender that appeared to take Jones out, referee Shaun Brickell awarded a scrum to Keys on the 5 metre line which eventually led to a penalty try being awarded to Keys as a result of one too many offences from the under pressure Quins scrummage. The penalty try was awarded with 25 minutes played.

The frantic opening eventually calmed and Quins, who were now restored to 15 men were finally able to exit their own half and create some chances. The visitors exploited an overlap, as Keys switched off in defence out wide and Quins wing Morgan Griffiths crossed the whitewash to score his sides first points of the game with a little over 30 minutes played.

Quins seemed to now have the upper hand and Griffiths closed the gap further on the stroke of half time when he again exploited an overlap to cross in the corner. Craig Evans this time failed to add the touchline conversion. Keys prop Richard Cornock was shown the yellow card for an offence at a ruck in the build up to the try, meaning he would spend the opening 10 minutes of the second half in the sin bin.

Despite being a man down, Keys started the second half well and just 5 minutes in to the half they secured a bonus point with their 4th try. Flanker Ieuan Jones, who was perhaps cruelly denied a wonderful individual try in the first half kept the ball firmly in hand and an excellent drive from the Keys pack saw Jones crash over for the try. Owen Howe added the conversion with Keys once again firmly in control.

With time ticking on, the match then continued without any real incident or chance really being created by either side. Both Keys and Quins choosing to kick for territory rather than try anything silly on an increasingly heavy pitch.

With just under 5 minutes remaining Keys crossed for their 5th and final try as a result of an excellently timed tackle from centre Lewis Barnett, on permit from Penallta for Keys, and the tackle then led to an excellent steal from Keys replacement prop Anthony Lott, who fed Tom Lampard whose excellently timed pass freed Barney Nightingale, who then realised replacement wing Elliott Jones who raced away line to score the try and put the game to bed. Owen Howe added the relatively straightforward conversion with around 2 minutes remaining.

To their credit Quins didn’t give up and crossed for their 3rd try with the final play of the game when Gavin Thomas broke to score nothing more than a consolation try for his side which was unconverted.

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Gealey holds nerve to send Stars to victory

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NEW DOCK STARS earned their first win of the season on Saturday (Jan 15) as they beat Bynea 29-30 in a thrilling encounter.

The Dock held a 20-12 lead at half time and were ahead going into the final stages.

Bynea thought they had won the game when a late score put them 29-27 in front.

However, the Stars hit back with time running out and Adam Gealey scored a penalty to win the game for his side.

That gave him a personal haul of 15 points having already scored with two penalties and three conversions.

Dylan Jones scored two tries for the visitors and Jordan Evans got the other.

Bynea’s George MacDonald scored a hat trick of tries and Finlay Cooke also crossed the whitewash once.

James Branson added three conversions and one penalty.

It was a thrilling encounter as both sides belied their positions at the foot of the table.

On Saturday, January 22, the Stars travel to Llandybie while Bynea host Betws.

Photo by Darren Harries

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Furnace seal second win

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FURNACE UNITED earned their second win of the League 3 West B season on Saturday (Jan 15) as they beat Llandybie.

Daf Green scored for the Cherries with other tries coming from Joe Qualters-Jones, Myles Harries, Joe Pugh and Jonny Roberts.

Green was successful with three of five conversion attempts and he also added a penalty.

Furnace held a 13-5 lead at half time as Llandybie scored an unconverted try in each half.

Ioan Rees and Josh Watkins scored the tries for the visitors.

On Saturday, January 22, Furnace United travel to Llandeilo while Llandybie host New Dock Stars.

PHOTO by Darren Harries

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Saunders stars as Llangennech beat Gowerton

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LLANGENNECH remain unbeaten in League 1 West after they won 33-16 away at Gowerton on Saturday (Jan 15).

Liam Hutchings put the visitors ahead with the first try of the game and Tom Neale added the extras.

Gowerton then got themselves on the scoreboard with a penalty but Llangennech were soon back on the attack.

Jordan Saunders was next to go over and Neale again added the extras.

Gowerton reduced the arrears once more with another penalty and the visitors held a 14-6 lead when the half time whistle went.

Gowerton scored another penalty early in the second half to keep themselves in the game.

However, Llangennech kept applying the pressure and they soon had their third try with Saunders going over for his second and Neale adding his third conversion to make it 21-9.

Saunders then completed his hat trick to also earn his side a bonus point.

Gowerton responded with a converted try to bring the score back to 16-26 but it was the visitors who had the last word.

Greg George scored their fifth try of the game and Neale converted to complete the scoring.

Saunders was named man of the match for his try hat trick and the win sees them move on to 25 points, six points above second placed Newcastle Emlyn.

The sides are next in action on Saturday, January 29, when Llangennech host third placed Felinfoel while Gowerton travel to Aberystwyth.

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