Tata Steel
Tata Steel 22 v 59 Cardiff
25 August 2018 - Tata Steel RFC, Port Talbot

Match Report

Tata Steel 22 Cardiff 59

Cardiff ran in nine tries in their final warm up game of the new season at Tata Steel.

The Blue & Blacks were made to work very hard in the opening minutes by the home side, but were first on the scoreboard. Joe Gatt had made a break in mid-field and when he sent Amir Jiwa Walji on his way the winger got to within a few metres of the line. The ball was stripped free by the home defence only for it to drop over the line and alert debutant Martin Roberts was to pounce on i,. Gareth Thompson converted.

It took a further fifteen minutes before the next score. In between there was a lot of defensive work for both sides to put in but when Morgan Allen burst up the middle the powerful No8 was able to get close to the Steel line. When the ball was recycled Nathan Smith was on hand to score the second converted try. From there The Blue & Blacks took control of the game with a two try burst before half time giving then a cushion to build on for in second half. First Allen, who led the charge from the front, intercepted a move by the home backs and went straight for the line. When he was stopped short but the ball was carried on through via a pick and go before being fed out for Allen to score. The second was set up by Gatt. Again the centre burst through the middle and was able to feed Jiwa Walji who scored in the corner.

During the second half there were a number of personnel changes as the squad was able to show what they could do. The home side clawed a try back in the opening minutes of the half but a great break by Thompson saw him link with Llywarch Ap Myrddin to score in the corner. Matthew Powell claimed his first try in Blue & Black when he chased down a Thompson kick and put enough pressure on the home defence to force a turn over and were awarded a penalty try when a five-metre line out was pulled down. Tata got two tries to reward their defensive efforts towards the end of the game but two more try debutants gave the score line a truer reflection of the dominance the visitors had shown. Second row Michael Bratcher and flanker Anthony Cox both scoring as the game came to an end.

Cardiff will be pleased with the victory but will know next week will be a tougher challenge as the Principality Premiership begins at home to Merthyr