Match Report with thanks to South Wales Argus Monday November 16th
17 November 2009 22:07:29
Cross Keys 25 Carmarthen Q 8
HARD-working Cross Keys out muscled Carmarthen Quins in a splendid display of controlled forward play to run out deserved 25-8 winners, writes Geoff Champion.
Former Bridgend full back Gareth David capped a fine all round performance by kicking six penalty goals and a conversion. His 20 points match haul boosted his league points total for the season so far to 159.
But the outstanding player on view was Keys’ dynamic wing forward Robert Nash who, fittingly, stormed over for his team’s only try in the last move of the game.
Nash was simply everywhere in attack and defence and he was a real inspiration to the rest of his team-mates.
The Quins’ points came from a wing Andrew Banfield corner try midway through the second half while outside half Gareth Cull also kicked a penalty goal nine minutes after the interval.
That the game was able to go ahead at all after the appalling wet weather hours before was a tribute to the work of the Pandy Park ground staff and the big investment made by the club in improving the pitch in recent years. In fact, the playing area was in remarkably good condition and held up very well for the full 80 minutes although handling was always a problem in the wet and windy conditions.
Apart from David and Nash, Keys also had a superb hooker in Richard Emms while Tom Lampard and Jevon Groves were also prominent in the impressive home back row.
Keys, playing with the wind at their backs, looked to be in some trouble in the first half hour failing to get any points on the board although talented centre Leon Andrews crossed the line in the 22nd minute – only to be recalled for an earlier knock on.
Then the home pack took a firmer grip on proceedings, winning field positions for cool David to kick a hat-trick of short-range penalty goals to give his team a 9-0 interval lead. By then, the visitors also had lost the services of their hooker Richard Wilkes who was sent to the sin-bin after stepping into a ruck from he wrong side..
Fortunately for Keys, the wind died down in the second period although they did concede a try when David, for once, made an error choosing to run the ball out of his 22 metre area when he should have kicked for touch. The Quins immediately pounced and swiftly worked the ball out wide for Banfield to grab his unconverted try in the corner.
Keys roared back in the closing stages and it was that man Nash again who somehow found the energy to sprint over for his last-minute try.
Cross Keys forwards coach Greg Woods said after the match: “That was an outstanding performance by our boys. We ensured we controlled the game as we wished and our set pieces were superb. We played sensible – if not pretty – rugby and we thoroughly deserved the victory.”
Cross Keys: G. David; M. Johnstone, L. Andrews, M. Pewtner, N. Trowbridge, R.James, O. Jones, captain; J. Price, R. Emms, R.Cornock, C. Bridges, B. Watkins, T. Lampard, R. Nash and J. Groves.
Scorers: try - R. Nash (80 mins); conversion – G. David; penalties – G. David (31, 38, 40+2, 52, 65 and 70 mins).
Carmarthen Quins: A. Rees; A. Banfield, J. Harries, T. Davies, captain, R. Carter; G. Cull (J. Garland 71), S. Martens; A. Beaujean (A. Davies 57), R. Wilkes (B. Edwards 66), K. Jones (M. Monaghan 57), G. Evans, M. Morgan, W. Williams (I. Cunningham 68), E. Lloyd and G. Williams. Scorers: try – A. Banfield (57 mins); penalty – G. Cull (49 mins).