- Hard-earned bonus point for Swansea
- Downpour makes conditions at Carmarthen Park tricky
- Controversial penalty try seals victory for Quins
By: Paul Hopkins
The All Whites fell to a close defeat at a soaking wet Carmarthen Park in a match that could have gone either way right up until the final play.
There were many encouraging signs for Richard Lancaster’s men as they went toe to toe with a tough Quins side, but were unable to break through their defence.
Swansea were awarded an early penalty after Carmarthen entered a maul offside, but full back Owen Howe missed his effort at goal.
Whites prop Hugh Gustafson was guilty of diving over the top of a ruck so fly half Aled Thomas chipped to the corner. Another three penalties in a row were given away, all for offside, and Thomas kicked to touch on each occasion, but outstanding defence by the St Helen’s men kept the Quins at bay.
It was the visitors who took the lead mid-way through the half when the Quins pack were penalised for failing to bind at a scrum. Howe kicked the three pointer.
Aled Thomas threw a clever dummy in midfield and found prop Javan Sebastian in support, who drove into the heart of the Whites’ defence. Winger Tom Williams then sprinted towards the line, but the supporting scrum half Aled Davies lost possession over the line.
When lock Jay Williams failed to take a lineout, a Garryowen by Aled Thomas caused panic in the Swansea defence with Howe failing to deal with the danger. Tom Williams was unable to capitalise though as the ball ran away from him with the line at his mercy.
The visitors almost scored on the stroke of half time when the Quins tried to play some elaborate soccer on the floor, but Tom Williams regathered to take the ball dead.
Half-time:- Carmarthen 0 Swansea 3
Howe was handed a chance to extend the lead after the interval when the home side was penalised for a professional foul at the ruck, but he hit the post.
The full back made no mistake just a minute later from almost the exact same spot when the Carmarthen forwards dived into the ruck off their feet.
A box kick by scrum half Rhodri Wells was well dealt with by Quins winger Morgan Griffiths, and Tom Williams again looked like scoring, but another handling error brought an end to the move.
The home pack put huge pressure on their Swansea counterparts and pushed them off a scrum just five metres out from the try line. Referee Rhys Thomas controversially opted to award a penalty try.
Things went from bad to worse for the visitors when prop Richard Murphy was yellow carded for persistent infringement at the scrum.
Another massive scrum by the Quins pack earned them a penalty, which Aled Thomas duly converted.
In search of a match clinching try, the ever-lively Tom Williams made break on the wing, but was tackled into touch a metre short of the line. Then a driving maul from the lineout saw Aled Davies held up over the whitewash as the Swansea defence remained solid.
The visitors did have one final chance, and a good lineout take by Jay Williams on half way sent replacement flanker Morgan Morris rampaging forward. The supporting James Davies chipped ahead, but Griffiths picked up the loose ball and cleared.
Next up for Carmarthen is a home match against Bridgend, while Swansea host RGC 1404.
Full-time:- Carmarthen 10 Swansea 6
Tries:- Penalty try (52)
Cons:- Aled Thomas (52)
Pens:- Aled Thomas (62)
Pens:- Owen Howe (24, 46)
Yellow cards:- Richard Murphy (56)
Venue:- Carmarthen Park, Carmarthen
Referee:- Rhys Thomas
Weather:- Heavy rain, 13C
Man of the match:- Nathan Williams
15 Tom Prydie
14 Tom Williams
13 Nick Reynolds
12 Josh Batcup
11 Morgan Griffiths
10 Aled Thomas
9 Aled Davies
1 Nathan Williams (rep: Rhys Davies 63)
2 Rhodri Clancy (rep: Torin Myhill 54)
3 Javan Sebastian (rep: Steffan Thomas 70)
4 Josh Helps
5 Tom Price
6 Shaun Jones
7 Lewys Millen
8 Lee Taylor ©
16 Rhys Davies
17 Torin Myhill
18 Steffan Thomas
19 Rhys Minchin
20 Sion Colella
21 Ifan Beynon-Thomas
22 Shaun Marshall
23 Jack Price
15 Owen Howe (rep: James Davies 67)
14 Andrew Claypole
13 Callum Carson
12 Rhys Williams
11 Tom Williams
10 Phil Jones
9 Rhodri Wells (rep: Josh Guy 54)
1 Hugh Gustafson
2 Ashley James (rep: Paul John 67)
3 Richard Murphy (rep: Will Jones 67)
4 Adam Thresher (rep: Morgan Morris 53)
5 Jay Williams
6 Jon Vaughan (rep: Rory Gallagher 58)
7 Will Jones (rep: Chris Thomas 58)
8 Jon Fox ©
16 Paul John
17 Jack Powell
18 Chris Thomas
19 Rory Gallagher
20 Morgan Morris
21 Josh Guy
22 James Davies
23 Jake Randell