Cross Keys were not really tested by visitors Swansea as they eased to a
bonus point victory, with the pack proving their worth in the tricky
weather conditions, although under foot the Pandy Park surface was
Swansea were first on the scoreboard as both sides struggled to get familiar with the conditions in the opening 10 minutes. Swansea struck a penalty by Luke Price in the 11th minute despite both assistants leaving their flags down behind the posts but referee Craig Evans judged it as being over and overruled his assistants.
Keys then began to set the pattern for the remainder of the game as the forwards began making yards at every opportunity, particularly from lineouts and scrummages. It took until the 20th minute for Keys to get their opening score as Rhys Jones kicked a penalty to tie the scores with Keys well and truly now on top.
The first try of the game came when the already struggling Swansea pack were reduced to 7 men with tight-head prop Ryan Thomas sent to the sin bin just before the half an hour mark and two minutes after the sin-binning Keys produced another unstoppable scrum and number 8 Adam Powell controlled brilliantly as the scrum rampaged forward and collapsed over the ball as the scrum moved over the tryline for the opening try of the game. Rhys Jones failed to add the extras as Keys went in to the lead for the first time.
With Swansea still down to 14 men Keys continued to make strides up field and this time a huge rolling maul that started around the halfway line and the a breakaway by firstly Reuben Tucker and then Darren Hughes saw the ball worked across the backline with the Whites all at sea in defence and Aaron Bramwell strolled over with ease for a try that Rhys Jones converted.
Half Time Score Cross Keys 15 Swansea 3
The second half saw much of the same with Keys playing down the slope towards the clubhouse and just 5 minutes in to the half and from a driving lineout Scott Matthews, a late first half replacement for the injured Reuben Tucker, crossed the line after the Keys pack once again proved unstoppable. Rhys Jones unsuccessful with the conversion as the wind and rain began to build.
The next 20 minutes or so proved forgettable to say the least although it was probably Swansea's best period of the match but Keys defence was in no mood for favours and kept the Whites at bay.
Keys finally clinched the bonus point for their 4th try after 68 minutes when Danny Hodge scored an excellent try dragging around 3 Whites defenders with him over the try line after yet more brilliant build up play from the Keys pack saw Hodge jr. do the rest from around 20 yards out. Rhys Jones this time judging the wind perfectly to add the tricky conversion. Jones added a penalty a few minutes later as the game entered the final 10 minutes.
The fifth try came after a number of scrums on the Swansea were reset and the Keys plans were plain for all to see and Adam Powell crossed for his second try in almost identical fashion to his first as the game entered injury time, crashing over after brilliantly controlling the ball at the base of the scrum. Rhys Jones adding the simple conversion to round off another victory for Keys despite once again perhaps not playing to their full potential.
As we enter a break for the autumn internationals Keys record is pretty impressive with 14 competitive games played so far this season and 12 wins coming from those games. The break will no doubt do everyone a world of good as bumps and bruises are given their first real chance to recover properly.
Cross Keys Scorers:-
Tries: Adam Powell (x2), Aaron Bramwell, Scott Matthews & Danny Hodge
Conversions: Rhys Jones (x3)
Penalties: Rhys Jones (x2)
Penalty: Luke Price
Keys man of the match: Richard Cornock