Conbeer and Hughes star as Scarlets run riot against Nottingham
SCARLETS’ Ryan Conbeer crossed for a hat-trick and 18-year-old Archie Hughes claimed a double on debut as Scarlets ran out 55-21 winners at a sun-soaked Parc y Scarlets.
It was an entertaining contest for close to 3,000 fans, many of them returning to the stadium for the first time in 19 long months.
Credit to Nottingham who battled throughout and dominated the opening exchanges, but it was the pace and invention of the young Scarlets back division that saw them through in an encouraging nine-try display for new head coach Dwayne Peel.
It was the Archers who opened the scoring through impressive fly-half Sam Hollingsworth, but with No. 8 Sione Kalamafoni to the fore, the Scarlets soon found their stride.
Corey Baldwin, in his first match back from a spell at Exeter, crossed in the corner then Conbeer was put away on the other wing.
Hooker Shaun Evans then touched down on the back of a strong rolling maul to add a third as the home side went into a 19-7 interval lead.
Early in the second half, Hollingsworth poached a second with a clever kick through, but Scarlets then pulled away with a flurry of tries.
Replacement Sam Costelow found acres of space to put a perfectly-placed kick in the path of fellow sub Steff Evans, then slick hands put Conbeer away for his second in the right corner.
Then came the Archie Hughes cameo.
The Tenby product, who has only just signed for the Scarlets Academy, took an inside pass and danced away for his first, then appeared on the shoulder of the side-stepping Evans for his second of the afternoon.
The visitors bagged a third from close range, but it was the outstanding Evans who crossed for the try of the game, dummying and racing away.
Hughes could have had a hat-trick but unselfishly flicked an inside pass to Conbeer to canter under the posts to cap an encouraging display for Peel and his coaching team.
The Scarlets head up to North Wales on Sunday for a training camp before taking on Leicester Tigers at Welford Road on Thursday evening.
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