Cardiff
2007/2008 Principality Premiership
Cardiff 15 v 0 Llandovery
19 January 2008 - Cardiff Arms Park, Cardiff
Llandovery

Match Report

Cardiff 15 Llandovery 0

Cardiff got back to winning ways on a heavy pitch. Following a morning pitch inspection the game went ahead. With the wind blowing and damp conditions it was not going to be a feast of running rugby.

Playing with the wind in the first half and it was the home team that opened the scoring. With just 5 minutes on the match clock they had a scrum on halfway. Picking up from the base Adam Powell fed Owen Ruttley, Roger Davies had had cut a line between the wing and fullback and the scrum half’s pass put him through the hole at pace. No one laid a finger on him as he crossed for a try that Leigh Halfpenny converted.

Blustery conditions made it very difficult to control the ball. So it was down to the forwards to take the game to the visitors, and as all forwards will tell you they love a rumble in the mud.

Llandovery were now coming more into the game, and an attack into the home 22 nearly led to a score, the final pass though just going astray, but as the ball went loose Cardiff pounced, the ball ending up in Craig Evans hands. The outside half saw no one in front of him and put his head down for the long sprint to the line. The heavy pitch however had other ideas and he was stopped 10 metres short as the visitors full back raced back to make the tackle.

Most of the play was now taking place around the half way line. With a greasy ball no pattern to the play was developing as both sides made mistakes. Cardiff did get a penalty opportunity just before half time. Leigh Halfpenny added the points to make the score 10-0 at the interval.

As the second half began the rain started to fall a little heavier. This only led to more mistakes and an already stop start game started to become more stop stop. The Blue and Black set piece though was getting well on top and with Chris Stamatakis and James Down ruling the lineout the visitors found keeping the ball difficult.

But with the wind behind them the got their reward by kicking the ball long into the Cardiff half, then closing the home defence down and not allowing them any field position. Eventually something had to give and The Drovers were awarded a penalty, the kick though caught the wind and drifted wide.

The home side now started to apply more pressure and with the scrum now in control and Adam Powell getting over the gain line at every opportunity it looked like another score would come at any minute, but with the pitch now heavy and the ball wet, mistakes were plentiful.

From one such mistake the Drovers nearly got a score of their own, a fly hack from inside their own 22 saw full back Gareth James chase the ball to close to the home line, Roger Davies and Leigh Halfpenny though won the race and the ball was cleared.

Cardiff eventually got the score that settled the match with a few minutes left on the clock. Replacement scrum half Glen Holloway taking a quick tap penalty from 7 metres out and scrambling over the line un-opposed. Halfpenny’s conversion was blown wide.

That was to be the last scoring action and with the referee calling time on the game the players headed for the warmth of the shower and Cardiff had a much-needed win 15-0.

 

Official : Matthew Aplin (Wales)

Cardiff Llandovery
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