Bridgend Ravens
2000/2001 Welsh/Scottish League
Bridgend 33 v 37 Cardiff
23 September 2000 - Morganstone Brewery Field, Bridgend

Match Report

Bridgend 33 Cardiff 37

Cardiff stunned Bridgend as they clawed back a 22 point deficit in a sizzling Brewery Field encounter.

Bridgend stay ahead of their rivals, however, thanks to their superior try count.

Cardiff prop Spencer John, scorer of two tries, hailed the competitiveness of the league this season.

"This is the way rugby is going - bigger, fitter stronger players and higher scores," a delighted John said.

Dropped ball

The home side led 30-8 at one stage, but once Spencer John - with his second try - and then Damien Geraghty had scored early after the interval, with both converted by Neil Jenkins, Cardiff always had the edge. Their recovery took them into a 33 - 37 lead.

Bridgend could have snatched it at the death after Cardiff's forwards were penalised for diving over the top just four yards from their own line, but lock Chris Stephens dropped the ball on the charge.

Bridgend started the game in the same frenetic fashion as in last week's victory over Ebbw Vale.

Golden boy

Winger Gareth Jones grabbed the game's first try after a superb break by outside-half Craig Warlow sent the former Cardiff man in at the corner. Warlow converted to add to his earlier penalty.

Cardiff golden boy Craig Morgan quickly hit back with a try on 20 minutes to add to Neil Jenkins' eighth minute penalty before Bridgend made what should have been decisive scores.

Gareth Jones scored his second try and a great move then unleashed Simon Hill to gallop over form 25 yards out unopposed.

But Cardiff refused to give up and rallied with two tries of their own. Prop Spencer John charged over on the half hour and then a hack up field by Paul Jones gave Craig Morgan the break he needed to outpace the covering defenders to score.

Warlow and Jenkins exchanged penalties just before half-time, but Cardiff were left cursing their luck after two Neil Jenkins penalties hit the posts in the swirling breeze.

But the tries from John and Geraghty, after what must have been a stormy half-time dressing room, gave Cardiff the thin cushion they needed.

Scorers - Bridgend
Tries: G Jones 2, Hill. Cons: Warlow 3. Pens: Warlow 4.

Scorers - Cardiff Tries: C Morgan 2, Geraghty, John 2. Cons: Jenkins 3. Pens: Jenkins 2.

Official : Robert Davies (Wales)

Bridgend Cardiff