Cardiff
2015/2016 Premiership Challenge Cup
Cardiff 32 v 26 Aberavon
21 November 2015 - Cardiff Arms Park, Cardiff
Aberavon

Match Report

Cardiff 32 Aberavon 26

Cardiff maintained their unbeaten record in the Fosters Challenge Cup with a hard fought win over Aberavon

The home side had the best of the opening minutes but despite the possession the scoreboard failed to move. In fact the Wizards were the first on the board. Sam Williams picked off a pass in midfield and raced in from half way. Cameron Clement added the conversion before Aberavon were again knocking on the Cardiff line. This time though the Blue & Blacks held firm.

A series of penalties against the Wizards gave Cardiff great field position but again the final pass went astray.  The game changed as a contest after 35 minutes. Both Cardiff props had been replaced and when Lewis Smout, one of the replacements, was forced off the scrums became uncontested and with no prop replacements left Cardiff were forced to play with fourteen.

And they got back in the game on the stroke of half time. A jinking run by Ceri Young created space on the outside for Luke Ford. The big centre got a metre within the line and offloaded to Nicky Griffiths who was pulled back off the ball and a penalty try was awarded. On the stroke of half time Callum Hall added a penalty to send Cardiff in 10-8 ahead.

The Blue & Blacks started the second half with a bang. First Oli Smyth was sent over, again a pass from Ford creating the space. Ceri Young grabbed the third try four minutes later. Morgan Sienawski put the winger into space before he cut back in to avoid the cover defence. The bonus point try came in the 52nd minute. Mike Hale blasting a hole on the twenty-two before crossing. Callum Hall was on target with two of the conversions and Cardiff looked home and hosed.

The Wizards had other ideas though and as the fourteen men tired gaps appeared, Aaron Grabbham exploiting the space to score. Then things got even harder for the home side, two yellow cards within a minute saw then spend nearly ten minutes defending with 12. David Pritchard scored to bring them closer and when Rhys Fose went over in the corner the last few minutes looked like they could be a bridge too far. But this squad is made of stern stuff and defending for their lives they clung on to win 32-26 and sit top of Pool B