Drovers make cup progress with seven-try romp
2:21pm Monday 17th February 2014 in Sport
Tondu 6 Llandovery 45
Llandovery eased through to the last eight of the Swalec Cup when they ran out convincing seven tries to nil winners against a brave but eventually outplayed Tondu, writes Huw S Thomas.
The Championship side predictably gave it their all in front of their biggest home crowd of the season but they posed little threat to the confident and composed Drovers.
Forwards coach Euros Evans was delighted at the result.
“You never know what awaits you in the Cup but our control up front was spot on and we dominated most aspects of play,” said Evans whose work with the Llandovery forwards has not had the recognition it deserves.
Under skipper and flanker Phil Day, the pack - with No 8 Richard Bloomfield and returning flanker Lloyd Phillips in great form - kept a tight hold on proceedings on a mud-bath of a pitch and Tondu’s only consolation was the healthy takings at the clubhouse bar.
The Llandovery set-piece was the key to domination, the scrum powerful and the line-out continually fruitful and four of the tries came from positions set up by either the scrum or the line-out.
The losers made a good game of it in the first half with No8 Ashton Evans, lock Hywel Davies and fly-half Matthew Murphy catching the eye. The hosts trailed just 7-6 in the 25th minute.
Scrum half Graham Powell responded to an early converted try from prop Wyn Jones with two good penalties out of the mud but once wing Aaron Warren slalomed through under the posts, the outcome was not in doubt.
A well-judged kick from fly-half James Garland brought a try for wing Jake Randall, who showed good dribbling skills to establish a 19-6 interval lead.
The Waterwheelers had a good spell of pressure soon after but could not find a way through and once centre Rhodri Jones scythed through from a move at a close-range scrum, it was only a matter of how many more tries the Drovers could score.
Game Tondu never for a moment bowed the head to the immense pride of coach and former Wales scrum-half Gerald Williams but their legs gave away in the last ten minutes.
The Drovers managed more tries through replacement flanker Richard Brooks and two from their outstanding centre Matthew Jacobs, all converted by replacement fly-half Ian Brooks.
Attention this week turns back to the Premiership when the third-placed Drovers meet fourth-placed Cross Keys at Church Bank.
With both clubs in sight of a precious play-off place, the game will have a vital influence on final league placings and a big crowd is expected at Church Bank (KO 2.30pm).