A Jamie Davies hat-trick Cardiff snatched the points for the Blue and Blacks and dented Cross Keys top three ambitions.
The early stages belonged to Cardiff and they were in front after three minutes. Garyn Lucan charged down a clearance kick and Cardiff pounced on the ball. When it was then moved wide Joe Griffin picked out Jamie Davies who had run an exceptional line to split the defense and score under the posts. Griffin converted.
Cross Keys hit back with a try of their own shortly after. Nathan Trowbridge raced towards the corner only to be pulled down just short, Aled James was on hand though to score. The Blue & Blacks then extended their lead. A break by Dan Crimmins was well supported,. Quick ball was made available by the rest of the pack and Sion Hopkins used it wisely. He put Ryan Harford in a hole that he happily galloped into. The prop then showed great hands in delaying the pass to Davies who outpaced the cover to score his second.
Griffin extended the lead with the conversion and a penalty before Keys got aback into the game . Just before the break Dorian Jones landed a snap drop goal and then a penalty as the time ticked down for the visitors to go in 17 – 11 behind.
The second half was marred by several niggles. Referee Sean Brickell brandished several cards. Ryan Harford and Dan Hodge were sent for a ten minute rest following a bout of handbags. During their absence Keys took the lead. Robert Nash had come off the bench and from a driving lineout he found the space to sneak over. Jones added the conversion and a second penalty and the visitors looked to be in control.
Cardiff’s defense though was proving to be as good as ever and the pack - lead by the exceptional Ben Roach - were standing up to everything the Keys threw at them. That included any foul play and after one incident the touch judge stepped in to indicate an incident that saw Ollie Hodge shown a red card.
That was the end of Keys as an attacking threat and left Cardiff chasing the score that may see them win the game. It came with virtually the last move of the game. A break by Matt Smith was supported by Roach and when he went to ground Lucas swung the ball to Griffin. He in turn found Jamie Davies near the halfway line. The winger beat the first line of defense before powering through the fullback’s tackle and sprinting over the line for his hat-trick and the Cardiff win. Griffin added the extras and from the restart the ball was whacked into the stand and the referee blew for no side.
Campese Ma'afu , Aaron Fowler , Ryan Harford , James Murphy , Matthew Screech , Nick White , Ben Roach , Dan Crimmins , Garyn Lucas , Joe Griffin , Shaun Powell (c), Darren Ryan , Matt Smith , Jamie Davies , Sion Hopkins
Replacements: Callum Lewis for Ryan Harford (54), Ryan Harford for Callum Lewis (64), Reuben Tucker for Nick White (65), Jac Hopkins for Dan Crimmins (76), Lewis Smout for Ryan Harford (80+)
Tries: Jamie Davies (3, 29, 80+) Conversions: Joe Griffin (3, 30, 80+) Penalties: Joe Griffin (37)
Cards: 53: Ryan Harford - Yellow , 74: James Murphy - Yellow
Richard Cornock , Ben Parry , Anthony Lott , Tom Lampard , Ollie Hodge , Rhys Peebles , Scott Matthews , Adam Powell , Rhys Dyer (c), Dorian Jones , Nathan Trowbridge , Aled James , Luke Ford , Kristian Baller , Gareth David
Replacements: Ryan James for Rhys Dyer (5), Rhys Dyer for Ryan James (11), Robert Nash for Scott Matthews (45), Danny Hodge for Rhys Peebles (46), Rhys Miller for Ben Parry (52), Dan Watchurst for Richard Cornock (52), Ryan James for Rhys Dyer (61), Nathan Williams for Luke Ford (77)
Tries: Aled James (10), Robert Nash (62) Conversions: Dorian Jones (63) Penalties: Dorian Jones (40+, 66) Drop Goals: Dorian Jones (27)
Cards: 55: Danny Hodge - Yellow , 70: Ollie Hodge - Red
Referee: Sean Brickell (Wales)