Carmarthen dented the All Whites’ ambitions of progressing in the British and Irish Cup with a resounding 41-17 win over their rivals at Carmarthen Park.
The home side enjoyed the best of the opening exchanges and fly half Jack Maynard had a simple opportunity to kick his side after the visitors’ defence stepped offside, but he fluffed his lines.
An outstanding charge through the middle by prop Nicky Smith earned the visitors a penalty when the Quins defence stepped offside, but Nicky J Thomas pulled his effort wide.
The home side got the first try when flanker James Davies showed great strength to step out of a tackle and beat the first man before passing to centre Andrew Banfield, whose pace did the rest. Maynard converted.
Nicky J Thomas got his side on the board with a penalty goal when the Carmarthen defence were caught offside in midfield. The full back had an opportunity to double his side’s points just a minute later when the Quins were penalised for straying in front of a kick, but he missed his shot at goal.
The second Quins try was a joy to watch with the backs and forwards combining well. Firstly through the power of Luke Joseph, who broke through a tackle to set up the space, then centre Rheon James was on hand to stretch the Whites’ defence, before he found Banfield who sprinted down the wing to score. Maynard converted.
Signs of ill-discipline began to show in the Quins ranks and James Davies was sent to the sin-bin for persistent offside. It was what the visitors needed and scrum half Jake Cole took full advantage by weaving his way over for a try after a routine lineout take by the pack. Nicky J Thomas converted.
Five minutes later though Cole was shown the yellow card for killing a dangerous Carmarthen attack. This time it was the home side who took advantage of the sin-bin with Maynard managing to keep his balance to dive over the line after another well taken lineout. He also converted.
The home side got their bonus point inside first half stoppage time after a spectacular counter attack orchestrated by Joseph and Banfield resulted in a try for scrum half Connor Lloyd. Maynard converted.
Half-time:- Carmarthen 28 Swansea 10
In the second half the home side looked to continue as they had left off in the first when winger Jason Harries eased through three tackles out wide only for Lloyd to fumble at the ruck.
The Quins kept up the pressure inside the Swansea twenty-two and despite an initially solid defensive line by the Whites they stepped offside so Maynard was able to add another three points.
Powerful running by Whites replacement Scott Otten and captain Sam Kiley created a rare attacking platform and Nicky J Thomas kicked a penalty to the corner. Carmarthen flanker Aidan Laxton was then yellow carded for persistent offside.
Swansea got themselves back to within two scores when replacement forward Dan Baker charged down a poor attempted clearance by Huw Rees and gathered to cross the line. Nicky J Thomas converted.
The home side regained the upper hand and Rees made up for his mistake by earning his side a penalty after he made a good break through the middle. When the Whites failed to retreat ten metres referee Cammy Rudkin showed replacement prop Matthew Norman a yellow card.
Nicky Harwood did well to steal possession near his own try line but the centre was then penalised for holding onto possession in the tackle. Maynard converted the penalty goal.
The Quins rounded off a fine performance with a sixth try after five minutes of solid Whites pressure ended with a mistake and James Davies capitalised by stealing possession to race in to score. Maynard converted.
The two sides meet again next week at St Helen’s in a Principality Premiership match.
Full time:- Carmarthen 41 Swansea 17
Referee:- Cammy Rudkin
Weather:- Cloudy, 12C
Man of the match:- Andrew Banfield
Tries:- J Davies (10, 78), Banfield (25), Maynard (38), Lloyd (40+2)
Cons:- Maynard (11, 26, 39, 40+3, 79)
Pens:- Maynard (50, 71)
Y cards:- J Davies (31)
Tries:- Cole (32), Baker (60)
Cons:- Nicky J Thomas (33, 61)
Pens:- Nicky J Thomas (13)
Y cards:- Cole (37), Norman (67)
15 Rhys Thomas (rep: Darren Daniel 72)
14 Lee Williams
13 Andrew Banfield
12 Rheon James
11 Jason Harries
10 Jack Maynard
9 Connor Lloyd (rep: Huw Rees 58)
1 Andrew Beaujean (rep: Ian Jones 33)
2 Richard Wilkes (rep: Ricky Guest 62)
3 Trystan Davies
4 Gavin Evans
5 Haydn Pugh (rep: Sion Bennett 48)
6 Aidan Laxton
7 James Davies
8 Luke Joseph (rep: Carwyn Jones 43)
15 Nicky J Thomas
14 Rhys Williams
13 Aled Jenkins
12 Nicky Harwood
11 Richard Williams (rep: Ben Roberts 72)
10 Aled Lewis
9 Jake Cole (rep: Will Batcup 72)
1 Nicky Smith (rep: Matthew Norman 52)
2 Andrew Littlehales (rep: Scott Otten 52)
3 Joe Rees (rep: Nicky Thomas 59)
4 Ben Fox
5 Sam Kiley
6 Rob Dudley-Jones
7 James Bija (rep: James McKenna 76)
8 Steffan Jones (rep: Dan Baker 52)
By Paul Hopkins