Swansea 20 Cardiff 17

Cardiff lost ground on the league leaders with at defeat to Swansea at St Helens

Cardiff had the better of the opening few minutes, but the Whites defence was up to the challenge. And as the half went on the home side grew in confidence, spinning the ball wide at every opportunity. Cardiff were forced to defend, but when Ioan Davies got the ball from a knock forward he broke out towards the Whites half. The ball then went through several phases before the Swansea defence snuffed out the attack close to the line.

The Whites then gained a foothold in the Cardiff half, several penalties saw them gain an opportunity near the Blue & Black line but the lineout malfunctioned and the danger was averted. As half time approached Cardiff worked their way into the Swansea half. Once again the ball was recycled several times before a high tackle presented Gareth Thompson with a penalty opportunity that he duly took. But shortly before the break Steff Williams levelled the scores with a penalty straight in front of the posts.

The second half saw Cardiff take the lead with a beautiful try. A lineout ball that came off the top was moved into midfield. Will Rees-Hole cut a great line and powered over from 25 metres. Thompson added the extras. Swansea hit back shortly after when Duane Eager crossed. The Whites took the lead when Cardiff went down to fourteen as Josh Thomas crossed for a converted try.

Back came Cardiff. A series of attacks were thwarted, but when Swansea knocked the ball forward as Cardiff went for the score Rees-Hole reacted quickest to score. But Swansea were not going to lie down. A delicate chip through allowed Ryan Griffiths to dot down for another unconverted try and that proved to be the difference in the end. Cardiff battled hard in the final few minutes, but the final pass just that didn’t go to hand and a few dropped balls summed up the afternoon. A losing bonus point leaves the Blue & Blacks six points behind Merthyr at the top of the table.

TEAM P W D L PF PA PTS
Merthyr 30 23 0 7 885 593 117
Cardiff 30 22 1 7 991 660 111
Pontypridd 30 22 0 8 1015 580 110
Llandovery 30 21 1 8 856 551 104
Ebbw Vale 30 20 1 9 762 594 95
Aberavon 30 18 2 10 698 603 90
Newport 30 17 2 11 759 700 88
Rygbi Gogledd Cymru 1404 30 14 1 15 852 650 85
Swansea 30 16 0 14 674 594 81
Carmarthen Quins 30 13 1 16 637 584 71
Bridgend Ravens 30 12 0 18 689 714 66
Llanelli 30 12 1 17 679 723 63
Bedwas 30 12 1 17 681 830 62
Cross Keys 30 5 1 24 586 1093 36
Bargoed 30 6 0 24 576 1003 35
Neath 30 1 0 29 406 1274 3