SWALEC Finals Match Reports

Pontypridd win SWALEC Cup
Pontypridd kept alive their hopes of a domestic double with a 35 v 24 victory over Aberavon this evening in the SWALEC Cup Final.
In a stunning match, Pontypridd looked to have been clear midway through the second half with a twenty-point advantage but Aberavon struck back with two tries in quick succession to set up an exciting finale.
Ponty held out at the end though and were deserved winners and return to Sardis Road with their first piece of silverware this season.
They had started they game the brighter, Simon Humberstone kicking them ahead with a penalty after missing his first shot at goal.
Aberavon’s Matthew Jarvis then levelled things with a long-range strike but he failed to kick his side in front moment later, his second kick drifting wide of the right hand upright.
While it took Aberavon slightly longer to find their feet, once they did they caused Ponty problems out-wide and Richard Carter broke free for the game’s first try. The wing smashed through two tackles on his way to touching down, much to the delight of the Aberavon supporters.
For all their territory and possession, Pontypridd craved a try and scrum-half Lewis Jones duly obliged, stretching out for his side’s first score after a nifty break. Humberstone’s conversion levelled the scores and the fly-half then nudged his side ahead with a drop-goal minutes later.
A fantastic solo break from flanker Darren Waters then gave Pontypridd the advantage they deserved. The back-row handed off the first line of defence and rounded the full-back to touch down under the posts. Humberstone converted to give his side a 20 v 10 half-time lead.
Humberstone’s name was the first one the score-sheet in the second period as he added another penalty to his tally just after the break.
Pontypridd continued to pile on the pressure and their control began to stretch Aberavon.
Captain Chris Dicomidis and Gareth Wyatt combined to create space down the right flank and Jones was the beneficiary, sprinting in for his second try which Humberstone converted.
Ponty’s score galvanised Aberavon, who threw everything at their opponents during a dominant 15 minute spell. They repeatedly threatened the Pontypridd line and second-row Sam Williams finally touched down for the try they deserved after Ponty ran out of numbers out-wide.
Aberavon continued to starve Ponty of the ball and just minutes later Nathan Strong scored in the same spot as Williams to bring his side right back into the game. Jarvis converted to bring the scores to within six points.
Ponty though replied straight from the re-start, Ryan Savage benefiting from confusion in the Aberavon ranks to score in the corner.
This set-up a tense final ten minutes at the Millennium Stadium but Pontypridd held on to lift the Cup.
Aberavon: Tries: Carter, Williams, Strong Pens: Jarvis Cons: Jarvis (3)

Pontypridd: Tries: Jones (2), Waters, Savage Pens: Humberstone (2) Cons: Humberstone (3) DG: Humberstone

Senghenydd win SWALEC Bowl
Senghenydd took the honours in the first game of SWALEC Finals day at the Millennium Stadium this afternoon, lifting the SWALEC Bowl after a 28 v 18 victory over Maesteg Quins.
The winners took an early lead through a Michael Cox try after five minutes after the winger raced onto kick through for the game’s opening try.
In a frantic opening Quins responded immediately with the impressive Lee Ronan touching down to level the scores. Captain Gareth Lewis added two points with the conversion to give his side the lead.
The lead changed hands again a few minutes later as a neat interchange in the backline sent centre Robert Andrews over and Alun Ford converted for Senghenydd.
Lewis kicked a penalty for his side before Michael Silcox scored Senghenydd’s third try.

Lee Ronan then pulled a try back for Quins before Lewis added another penalty to give Maesteg Quins the lead 18 v 17 at the break.

It took 15 minutes until the game’s next score, Ford kicking his side back in front with a penalty after 55 minutes.
Michael Hunt then extended Senghenydd’s advantage with a try 13 minutes from time and a Ford penalty late on put the result out of reach and Senghenydd took the first title of the day.
After the game Senghenydd head coach Chris Ferris said:
“That was a great game and a great advert for division’s 4, 5 and 6. It was an outstanding show of rugby from both sides.
“I think physically Maesteg Quins were on top but our fitness came through in the end.
“We scored some lovely tries in the first half and looked sharp behind the scrum and in the second period the forwards really rolled up their sleeves to see us through.
“It was deserved reward for a lot of effort over the last two years.
“We are already champions of division 4 east so we can now enjoy our last few games and finish the season in style."

Ammanford secure SWALEC Plate title
Ammanford secured their second SWALEC Plate title in two years, beating Glynneath at the Millennium Stadium 35 v 13.
It was a tight first half in the Welsh capital but in the second period Ammanford who play their league rugby a division above their opponents stretched away to lift the title.
Glynneath battled hard throughout the game and opened the scoring with a Jack O’Reilly penalty.
It was Ammanford who scored the opening try though, centre Tom Rees cut through the defence and then sent Mike Evans racing down the right win to score. Evans’ try was converted by Owain Williams to give Ammanford a 7 v 3 lead.
O’Reilly kicked his second penalty of the afternoon and then Glynneath regained the lead, centre Greg Roberts charged down an Ammanford clearance inside their own twenty-two and collected the loose ball to touch down. Fly-half O’Reilly added the conversion.
Roberts’ opposite number Matthew Brayley crossed for Ammanford’s second score after a dominate period and Williams’ conversion gave his side a one-point lead.
Full-back Matthew Fisher grabbed Ammanford’s third try just before the break and even though Glynneath had the better of the final phases in the first half the scores remained 19 v 13 at the break.
After the interval Ammanford’s superior fitness showed and Williams kicked three un-answered penalties to stretch his side’s advantage.
Iwan Mainwaring sealed the victory with a try seven minutes from time, Williams again added the conversion.
After the game Ammanford captain Mark Jones said,
“I am really pleased with the result, it was a hard game out there today
“It was physical upfront and that is what we expected from them today. They have come here with a clear intention to play and did well but I think our desire was ultimately greater.
"We are a good side and we have already secured promotion to Division one so that shows the desire in the team.
“We have great support out their today, it was like a sea of blue and they haven’t let us down all season.”
Ammanford: Tries: Evans, Brayley, Fisher, Mainwaring Pens: Williams (3) Cons: Williams (3)
Glynneath: Tries: Roberts Pens: O'Reilly (2) Cons: O'Reilly


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