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04 April 2019 / Club News

First XV in Seven Heaven!

The First XV put on a show of great running rugby alast week as they crossed for seven tries in a comfortable win at home to Llandaff North 46-17. Cheered on by a big crowd enjoying the fine spring sunshine the home side put this league tie to bed in the first half as they raced into a 31-3 lead with five tries.

The first score on the scoreboard though was by the visitors as they settled into the game well and picked up a penalty kick early on. But from that point it was one way traffic to the home side as first number eight Rob Carter stretched his legs to cross after his fellow blind side flanker Gareth Watts had forced himself through the defensive line.
And it was the big boys who combined well for the second try as first a pressure scrum on 5e half way line ensured the visitors had to pick and go from the base, then Carter turned over the tackle and the ball was whisked through the backs with some lovely hands giving fullback Josh Austin plenty of room to make great territory. When he was brought down the ball was recycled far too quickly for a floundering Llandaff defence, outside half Loz Howley releasing Man of the Match hooker Rhys Hewitt who broke the line, then prop Geraint David to take over the reins and charge towards the posts before releasing good supporting lock Dan Bawden to evade the final cover.
Next up it was tie. For the backs to get in on the act as they took advantage of a steal at a line out by Rhys Davis and a good drive by hooker Hewitt to give the play some momentum. Howley taking no time to spin the ball through the hands and with dummy three quarter runners coming from all directions, a lovely gap opened up for centre Jack Austin to race over.
The fourth was a peach of a try started well into Llantwit’s own half as Howley spotting that the Llandaff defence were up flat toe poked a lovely grubber kick through which fullback Austin collected on the chase who offloaded to his brother Jack at centre running a good angle and when he was stopped up came Howley to race over next to the sticks for a truly scintillating score.
For the fifth before the break it was back to the big boys as they took a line out in the visitors 22 and once secured headed for the whitewash on a strong driving maul with the Big Bear, Gareth Watts finally trundling over.
The second half predictably when a first half score like this is racked up became a cagey affair. Llandaff North are a decent side and far too proud a team to let Llantwit party in the sunshine and run free with such abandonment and really set about the home side from the kick off forcing them to defend for long periods. 
Llantwit though now playing towards the School End did when they ever had any possession looked to quickly turn and tire the visitors with some good tactical kicking by their half backs Ryan Evans and Howley. And they soon reaped their harvest with another line out gained they crossed once again with another driving maul with Bawden touching down for his second try.
Llandaff still kept to the task and were soon rewarded themselves as they crossed for two well taken try’s showing some good hands and some speed out wide. 
The last try for the home side was the pick of the bunch for the rugby purist as it was a delightful display of forwards and backs combining. First the pack dismantled their opposition in the scrum with a penalty being awarded but Llantwit chose to continue the move with number eight Carter and nine Evans linking well to take the move out wide and it was then quickly through the hands to Howley who was racing towards the corner flag before being hauled down. But he managed to keep the ball alive which was scooped up by fullback Austin who jinked his way back in field and threw a wild speculative pass. The wise old lock Shea popping up to collect but facing the wrong way pirouetted like a ballerina before giving the move some direction with a route one drive. The ball quickly recycled back once again to Austin who combined well with big lock Jamie Lewis crashing through the defence and Lewis flung the ball once again wide and by this stage a Llandaff defence was far too stretched and no match for centre Joel Thomas as he released fellow centre Jack Austin to canter over with a nicely angled run.
The final hurrah went to the visitors as they battled back and for to cross before the final whistle.
A good day in the sun for the Llantonians who now face a much sterner test this week as they take on Llandaff Norths close neighbours Llandaff. Llantwit are one up against the Llandaff city boys after a comfortable win in the capital in early March. But thy will be wary of them as Llandaff were a weakened side that day and will be smarting after such a heavy loss and by their recent results are finishing the season strongly having upset the form book by beating promotion challengers Treherbert last week. An intriguing game awaits then as Llantwit see out their final home game of the season with a bumper crowd expected as they are also hosting their first Family Fun Day with plenty of stalls and attractions for all to enjoy. The festivities starting at 12pm with kick off at 2:30pm.

A.H.

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