Swansea opened their British and Irish Cup campaign with a clinical 43-17 victory over Dundee High.
With both sides looking to put a disappointing start to their respective league campaigns to one side it was the visitors who started the brighter team and a break by winger Andy McLean set up a promising attack. Forwards Richie McIver and Richie Hawkins drove through the middle, forcing the Whites to kill the ball. However full back Jamie Urquhart pulled his effort at goal well wide of the posts.
The home side took the lead two minutes later when prop Nicky Smith found a gap in the visitors’ defence with flanker James Bija on hand to score under the posts. Nicky J Thomas converted. A good break by captain Harry Duthie forced the Swansea defence offside at the breakdown but Urquhart again missed a penalty attempt.
Urquhart took the ball at pace on the wing and found McLean in space but a superb ankle tap prevented a certain try. The Dundee High pack showed early signs of dominance and were close to a pushover try but desperate defence by the Whites kept them at bay.
The home side stretched their lead when winger Richard Williams took the ball at pace on the visitors twenty-two before side stepping out of a tackle and then racing in to score under the posts. Nicky J Thomas converted. A good break by Taylor Paris sparked an attack for Dundee High and the Swansea defence strayed offside. Urquhart this time kicked three points.
Whites scrum half Jon Preddy caught the visitors’ defence half asleep when he took a quick tap penalty but he was brought down inches short of the line. The home pack showed great power at a five metre scrum and number eight Steffan Jones scored with ease. Nicky J Thomas converted.
Half-time:- Swansea 21 Dundee High 3
Duthie was unlucky not to score in the corner almost immediately after the restart but Nicky J Thomas snuffed out the threat. The Swansea full back grabbed his side’s fourth and bonus point try when he intercepted a pass inside his own twenty-two and raced home to score. He missed the conversion.
A fumble on his own line by Nicky J Thomas gifted prop Steve Longwell an easy try, which was converted by Urquhart. A resurgence in the visitors’ pack continued when flanker Chris Cumming was driven over for a try from a close range lineout. Urquhart converted.
Swansea hit back almost immediately when flanker James McKenna drove up to the line before Steffan Jones gathered and squeezed over for a try. Nicky J Thomas converted. An excellent break through the middle by Nicky Harwood took his side into the twenty-two and prop Nicky Thomas was found in support. Dave Currie killed the ball and was promptly yellow carded, with Nicky J Thomas extending the Whites’ lead with a penalty goal.
Number eight Dan Baker picked up a loose ball inside his own twenty-two and showed excellent pace to leave the Dundee defence behind as he raced in to score a great solo effort the corner. Nicky J Thomas converted. In the dying moments James Bija was shown a yellow card for killing a dangerous Dundee attack.
Next up for Swansea is a trip to Carmarthen while Dundee High host Cornish Pirates, both in the British and Irish Cup.
Full time:- Swansea 43 Dundee High 17
Referee:- Eanna O’Dowd
Weather:- Partly Cloudy, 11C
Man of the match:- Steffan Jones
Tries:- Bija (8), R Williams (26), Jones (39, 65), Nicky J Thomas (47), Baker (77)
Cons:- N J Thomas (9, 27, 40, 66, 78)
Pens:- N J Thomas (72)
Dundee High scorers:
Tries:- Longwell (52), Cumming (61)
Cons:- Urquhart (53, 62)
Pens:- Urquhart (29)
15 Nicky J Thomas
14 Lewis Harrhy
13 Aled Jenkins
12 Ben Roberts (rep: Nicky Harwood 71)
11 Richard Williams
10 Cameron Clement
9 Jon Preddy (rep: Aled Lewis 79)
1 Nicky Smith (rep: Aled Mason 60)
2 Andrew Littlehales (rep: Scott Otten 60)
3 Ian Williams (rep: Nicky Thomas 63)
4 Jon Barley
5 David Blyth (rep: Ben Fox 41)
6 James McKenna
7 James Bija
8 Steffan Jones (rep: Dan Baker 71)
16 Scott Otten
17 Aled Mason
18 Nicky Thomas
19 Ben Fox
21 Aled Lewis
22 Nicky Harwood
23 Dan Baker
Dundee High team:
15.Jamie Urquhart (rep: Stewart Walker 79)
13.Harry Duthie (Capt)
11.Taylor Paris (rep: Jack Steele 67)
9.Andy Dymock (rep: Callum Bowie 79)
1.Steve Longwell (rep: Gav Robertson 67)
2.Darell Russel (rep: Neil Dymock 80+1)
8.Richie McIver (rep: Jamie Morrison 80+1)
By Paul Hopkins