An icy wind blew through the Arms Park as Cardiff took on Wales’ Under 19s in a friendly. Despite cold hands both sides attempted to run the ball, but this led to spilt passes and knock-ons associated with this type of weather.
From one such breakdown Chris Anderson thumped the ball into the Wales 22 where a good chase saw Cardiff gain an attacking line. The pack saw their opportunity and a well constructed driving maul saw Nathan Trevett emerge with the ball having crossed the line.
Playing with the wind in the first half, Wales would have expected to have the better of the territory, and in the 20th minute James Egan crashed over following a long passage of play in the Cardiff half, David Langdon converted. More pressure gave Wales a second score, Hampson being carded for not rolling away, Langdon slotting the 3.
Half Time Cardiff 5 Wales U19 10
Using the wind in the second half Cardiff began to build some pressure. A slick move saw them gain a foot-hold in Wales’ 22 only for a pass to be intercepted by Daniel Evans who raced under the posts for a try converted by Langdon. To lighten the mood a little and to the relief of some of the crowd, Neil Ballard left the field through injury to be replaced by Neil Hennessey, his place on the line being taken by young referee Matthew Tabor.
Cardiff pilled on the pressure, and eventually wore down the Wales defence, Aled James going over in the corner, Anderson converting from wide out. Having worked their way back into game the home side again slipped up, Leigh Halfpenny grabbing a loose ball to go under the posts from 30 metres out, Langdon again adding the extras.
By now the ball was moving around the field at a brisk pace as hands had warmed; Cardiff moved the ball from left to right several times before a scoring pass saw Andrew Taylor go over in the 74th minute, Anderson again converting.
But it was to be the last score as Wales Under 19s ran out winners by 24 points to 19.