Cardiff and Neath fought out an entertaining draw at the Gnoll in the last game of the season.
Cardiff made a great start. Having recovered the ball from the kick-off and sharp move behind saw Jason Tovey run a loop around Shaun Powell. When he received the ball back from the captain he shot through a hole in the defence, drew the full back and gave a simple scoring pass to Jack Phillips.
The game then went into a stop – start phase not helped by the constant sound of Gwyn Morris’ whistle. No side could really establish any pattern to the game. Tovey landed a penalty to extend the Blue & Black lead before the home side got on the board. Gareth King going over from short range after a series of penalties. Outside half Dai Langdon wasn’t having a good day with the boot and he pushed the conversion wide. He was also wayward with his out of hand kicking too, missing a simple penalty to the corner, putting it dead instead. He was though on target in the 34th minute to bring the home side level. That lead was extended when March Jones crossed to give the Blacks a 13-8 half time advantage.
The second half heard even more of the whistle. Both sides had a player sin-binned, but neither could take advantage of the extra numbers. It wasn’t until the last quarter when the teams really got going. Cardiff swung the advantage their way when a short range scrum allowed Jamie Davies to come on a short run to power over the line, Tovey with the extras. But some loose kicking allowed Neath to take the advantage back. Langdon making up for his poor kicking form to gather a loose kick on halfway, avoid the tacklers and score. Crucially he was again off target with the kick.Late in the game Cardiff were pressurising the home sides line. That pressure was to lead to a penalty that Tovey slotted and give Cardiff a share of the points and 8th place in the final table.
Roy Jones , Rhodri Clancy , Marc Jones , Euros Evans , Rhys Jones , Gareth Gravell (c), Matt Rees , Steffan Jones , Luc Jones , David Langdon , Bowdy Davies , John Leyshon , Chris Morgans , Kevin James , Gareth King
Replacements: Owain Ford for Roy Jones (54), Emyr Williams for Matt Rees (67), Ceri Jones for Marc Jones (72)
Tries: Gareth King (34), Marc Jones (39), David Langdon (70)
Penalties: David Langdon (19)
Cards: 45: Luc Jones - Yellow
Nathan Trevett , Aaron Fowler , Ryan Harford , Nick White , Dan Partridge , Macauley Cook , Thomas Young , Rory Watts-Jones , Garyn Lucas , Jason Tovey , Jack Phillips , Shaun Powell (c), Max Woodward , Jamie Davies , Dan Fish
Replacements: Joe Griffin for Dan Fish (40), Ben Roach for Nick White (49), Matthew Screech for Dan Partridge (51), Ethan Lewis for Aaron Fowler (56), Lewis Smout for Nathan Trevett (56), Callum Lewis for Ryan Harford (57), Darren Ryan for Max Woodward (69)
Tries: Jack Phillips (3), Jamie Davies (66)
Conversions: Jason Tovey (67)
Penalties: Jason Tovey (12, 74)
Cards: 40: Macauley Cook - Yellow
Referee: Gwyn Morris (Wales)