LLANELLI 18 ABERAVON 48
Former scarlet Aled Thomas and young scrum-half Reuben-Morgan Williams caused all sorts of problems for the Llanelli side playing their first game for a month.
No sooner had everyone taken their seats, than Llanelli were ahead. Their kick-off was not dealt with by the Wizards and centre Bleddyn Davies scored after only nine seconds.
A breathless first ten minutes saw a scrum penalty from Aled Thomas, resulting from a good kick and chase from Jonathan Phillips which forced Llanelli back over their own line. There followed a successful penalty from Ioan Hughes but just two minutes later Stef Andrews sidestepped to beat two defenders and passed to Chris Banfield who scored for the Wizards. Aled Thomas was unable to convert. The score was 10-8 to Llanelli.
The home side put together some attacking phases and, from broken play, found themselves with numbers out wide but the try-scoring pass went forward and the chance was wasted.
Shortly afterwards Reuben Morgan-Williams place a clever box kick chip down the touchline which Aled Thomas gathered to score and added the extras putting the Wizards in front.
The Wizards were quick to capitalise following a yellow card for Kalum Evans, Reuben Morgan-Williams was released following some good inter play to score in the corner. Thomas once again converted to make it a two-score match (10-22).
Llanelli got the final score of the first half, Hughes converting a penalty for Aberavon offside, taking the score to 13-22 at the break.
The home side began the second half brightly. A good attack and penalty found them camped on the Aberavon line but the Wizards defence held firm and the chance was lost – it proved a big turning point!
A loose clearing kick from Llanelli found its way to Aled Thomas who passed to Chris Banfield. He shifted the ball to Lloyd Evans who found young hooker Cameron Lewis who crossed for the bonus point try.
As both sides made changes, the game began to break up and Aberavon’s halfbacks started to enjoy themselves, both making excellent breaks and giving quick ball to the outside backs who were making significant gain line yards.
On seventy minutes, Llanelli scored their second try when second row Chris Long barged his way over following a five metre lineout.
Three tries in quick succession saw the visitors race away to a convincing victory. So a disappointing home defeat and with some tough fixtures on the horizon Llanelli will need to put this result well and truly behind them.
Next fixture is at Rodney Parade against Newport on Friday 13th March ko 8.00pm