What the Papers Say – Huw S Thomas reports:
Llandovery upset the odds at Church Bank when they came from 25-13 behind to inflict defeat on a side that had lost just once in the Premiership.
Few had expected the Drovers to win this Tywi Valley derby after their disappointing 36-10 loss at Llanelli a few days before but they lifted their game to pip second placed Quins with a late try from centre Rhodri Jones and conversion from fly half Ian Brooks.
Winning coach Lyndon Lewis recognised the importance of the game. “We knew that defeat would leave us off the pace in the chase for a top three position,” said Lewis, “so to come storming back for the win in the last 10 minutes was a great Boxing Day present to all concerned. It is going to be difficult to keep up the challenge to Pontypridd but this result will give us a boost, given the Quins’ impressive form this season.”
In a tight colourless first half only goal kicks troubled the score board - two from Ian Brooks shading one for opposite number Craig Evans.
The crucial moment of the game came when prop Gareth Thomas - one of a remarkable 16 former Coleg Sir Gar pupils in action for the two sides - was yellow carded in the 61st minute at a time that his side held a 25-13 lead.
All three back row forwards – James Davies, Will Boyde and Ellis Lloyd had crossed against one brilliant solo effort from Drovers scrum half Rhodri Davies. The game suddenly changed with the Llandovery front row of Wyn Jones, Luke Lewis and veteran Andrew Jones gaining huge dominance at the scrum. Ever dependable skipper Phil Day and the ever resolute Bryn Griffiths were also powerful presences in the loose and when Wyn Jones crashed through and Brooks added five points from the boot, Llandovery were only 25-23 behind.
With Andrew Jones a key figure despite having had late night emergency duty with Carms County Council, Llandovery upped the gear in rousing fashion. They conceded a penalty to Evans but in a grandstand finish the home pack turned the screw and let the outstanding Davies find centre Jones with a terrific long pass to tie the scores.
With three minutes remaining Brooks kicked the winning conversion for a 15 point tally to the delight of a packed clubhouse of Drovers supporters.