Llandovery 29 – 8 Llanelli
What the Papers Say - Huw S Thomas reports
Copyright Huw S Thomas, and used by kind permission of Huw S Thomas
Llandovery skipper Richard Brooks celebrated his 150th appearance for the club by leading them to a derby day victory over Scarlet rivals Llanelli.
No 8 Brooks first played for the club back in November 2011 and has since then been a key player in the Llandovery pack. “I made my debut off the bench against Cross Keys but I never thought that a Bonymaen boy would end up with Llandovery. I have really enjoyed my rugby up here in a great family club and look forward to many more years at Church Bank”.
“A lot of Boney boys have made their way here because of the brilliant coach-player relationship and we love the atmosphere. A lot of players – on both sides - were unavailable because of LV Cup duty – and had a chance to put their hands up for a regular spot in the Premiership.”
“We were always on top and to get a bonus point with a weakened side keeps us tucked neatly behind RGC at the top of the West table.”
The Drovers dominated throughout and retain second position in the West league.
Llanelli full back Jake Newman kicked an early penalty in a scrappy opening as both sides looked for cohesion with a number of raw albeit talented players in their line ups.
Llandovery opposite number Kristian Jones tied the scores with a point blank penalty but try chances were few and far between.
Out of the blue, Llandovery wing Rhodri Wall slipped tackles on the left and fed full back Lee Rees who then sent centre Ryan Evans racing away, Jones converting for a 10-3 lead.
Flanker Ellis Thomas was yellow carded on 33 minutes for obstruction and, down to 14 men, Llanelli went further behind to a try from prop Scott Jenkins following good work from flanker Shaun Miles. Jones converted but Llandovery went down to 14 men after prop Berian Watkins was penalised for an off the ball tackle to leave the score 17-3 at the break.
Llanelli lost a second player to the bin after a deliberate knock down by wing Adam Davies.
Wall was all but over in the corner as Llandovery upped the tempo only for intense pressure to be answered by sterling Llanelli defence led by skipper and lock Chris Long.
The defence finally cracked at a driven Llandovery line out with lock Jake Baker getting the touchdown to pull the Drovers clear.
With all the replacements on, Llandovery strove for the bonus point and another driven lineout came close to a try. But the Drovers were not to be denied and when Llanelli lost a scrum near their line Brooks sent replacement scrum half Scott Maynard in for the try.
Replacement full back Jack Evans added the conversion before replacement prop Richard Bassett barrelled over for Llanelli at the end.