2015/2016 Premiership Challenge Cup
Pontypridd 24 v 18 Cardiff
20 March 2016 - Sardis Road, Pontypridd

Match Report

Pontypridd 24 Cardiff 18

Cardiff went out at the semi-final stage of the Fosters Challenge Cup at Sardis Rd in a game they know they should have won.

The Blue & Blacks were first on the board when David Bird landed an early penalty. Pontypridd tried hard to get their game going but the defensive effort from Cardiff was outstanding. A missed tackle though sent wing Dale Stuckey straight up the middle, he was able to round the last tackle to score. Lewis Williams added the conversion. Cardiff came straight back and should have score when Bird intercepted the ball on his own ten metre line. The fly half didn't quite have the legs to go all the way though and Ponty were able to clear and go in at half time 8-2 ahead.

The early part of the second half belonged to the Blue and Blacks and they should have killed off the home side in a purple patch. A break by Harry Davies gave a foothold in the home half and when Richard Smith was set free in the twenty-two the powerful centre was able to score, Bird was wide with the conversion though. A few minutes later things go better. Smith again was the provider but the position had been set up by the forwards who were giving the Ponty set piece a real working over. They had set up a position in the home half and when the ball was moved out wide Smith broke a couple of tackles and fed Olly Smyth to score. Bird added the extras and Cardiff were two scores clear with 20 minutes left.

Ponty weren't just going to give up though and the defence needed to be of the highest order. In was up to the task for 15 of those minutes but Jake Thomas was able to dive over to set up a tense finish. Cardiff should have sealed it though from the kick off. Lewis Egal broke a couple of tackles following Ponty losing the ball. With just the fullback to beat and two men wide his pass drifted forward and the chance was gone. Ponty then threw everything at the Blue & Blacks and a series of catch and drive penalties nearly resulted in the winning try. But with time up they had to settle for 2 points and extra time.

In the extra minutes with Cardiff down to fourteen the defensive effort took everything out of Cardiff and when Chris Clayton scored there was no way back and Pontypridd marched on to the final where they will play Bedwas.


Attendance: 550

Pontypridd Cardiff