Home » Drovers edge through in mud bath

Drovers edge through in mud bath

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Mudbath: Both teams were coated at the final whistle • Pic: Viv Jones

Swalec Cup

Llandovery 9

Cardiff 6

LLANDOVERY edged their way through to the second round of the Swalec Cup in a dismal game that was hampered by atrocious conditions, with testament going to both sides for getting the game played.

In his programme notes the Llandovery Chairman Handel Davies described the pitch as heavy – and he was not mistaken, though the pitch did look in better shape than the one that Tata Steel and Llanelli managed to battle it out on. As well as the pitch being extremely heavy, the heavy rain that ruined the first half led to both sides being coated in mud, so that all 30 players were virtually unrecognisable.

Luckily Llandovery changed their shirts at the interval, and the game was able to continue, and the referee was able to see whom he was penalising. The Blue & Blacks were having the better of the battle in the first half and with James Murphy dominating the lineout on both side’s ball they gained a foothold in the Drovers half. That didn’t materialise as points though as the ball seemed to spend a lot of time on the floor with both teams failing to get to grips with the mud coated ball.

In fact it was the home side that were to have the first chance of points, however a penalty attempt by the usually reliable flyhalf Jack Maynard went wide as did a similar effort by opposite number James Thomas. Both though made amends shortly after from closer range to put the score at 3-3 at the interval, when both teams were just relieved to get back inside the changing rooms. As the half was beginning to draw to a close Luke Ford slipped through several tackles to offer a chance for the visitors, but the final pass fell foul of the conditions. As another Cardiff chance went begging, Llandovery took advantage and Maynard extended the home side’s lead with another penalty before the best chance of a try in the game.

Callum Hall chased down an intelligent kick into the corner of the Drovers twenty-two. Home full back Lee Rees made a hash of collecting the ball and as it spilt over the line Hall was just beaten to the touchdown by Matthew Jacobs. The second half saw an improvement in the overhead conditions but with the ground still boggy no progress of great note was made by either side in an equally miserable second half. Llandovery were on top in the early stages and Maynard was able to extend their lead with his third penalty. Cardiff responded by trying to rumble their way up-field. Thomas narrowed the gap with his second penalty before Maynard went wide with an attempt for 35 metres out. But it was to be the home sides day as they progress, albeit narrowly, to the next round.


Llandovery: 15. Lee Rees 14. Mike Evans 13. Jacob Cowley 12. Rhodri Jones 11. Matthew Jacobs 10. Jack Maynard 9. Rhodri Davies: 1. Wyn Jones 2. Dafydd Hughes 3. Greg Cunniffe 4. Bryn Griffiths 5. Jake Baker 6. Stuart Worrall 7. Richard Rees 8. Richard Brooks

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Replacements: 16. Berian Watkins 17. Dean Howells 18. Colin Markham 19. Ryan Morgans 20. Tom Ball 21. Craig Woodall 22. James Davies 23. Rhodri Wall

Cardiff: 15 Callum Hall, 14 Olly Smyth, 13 Luke Ford, 12 Will Rees Hole, 11 Ceri Young, 10 James Thomas, 9 Chris Williams: 1 Robert Lewis, 2 Joe Tomlinson, 3 Aled Rees, 4 Ben Thomas, 5 James Murphy, 6 Nick White, 7 Johnathan Edwards, 8 Joe Gaughan

Replacements: 16 Lewis Smout, 17 Dan Watts, 18 Joe Jones, 19 Sean Driscoll, 20 Morgan Sienaiski, 21 Tom Slater, 22 Terri Morgan Gee, 23 James Loxton