2012/2013 Principality Premiership
Swansea 14 v 16 Neath
23 November 2012 - St Helen's, Swansea

Match Report

Swansea 14 Neath 16


Neath produced a heroic defensive performance to deny the Whites a badly needed win, despite being down to 13 men for almost ten minutes in the second half.


It was the perfect start for the home side, who have traditionally struggled against neighbours Neath since the advent of the semi-pro era. Cameron Clement initially failed to deal with a high ball but rescued the situation with a pass to full back Rhys Williams who used his speed to race through the Neath defence and chip through to score an outstanding try. Clement converted.


Moments later the visitors were penalised for holding onto the ball after the tackle but Clement missed the difficult penalty chance. The Welsh All Blacks began to assert themselves in the match with David Langdon, Lee Evans and Chris Morgans linking up in midfield, before the Whites’ defence crept offside. Langdon kicked the resulting penalty goal.


Swansea hit back ten minutes later when number eight Dan Baker collected a ball from the ruck and powered 30 metres upfield, with Jake Cole on hand to score under the posts. Clement converted.


Neath cut the gap to eight points with a Langdon penalty when the Whites were caught offside in midfield. Centre Ryan Evans came inches short of scoring but the Swansea defence killed the ball to hand Langdon another three points.


Half-time:-   Swansea   14   Neath   9


Swansea were temporarily reduced to 14 men shortly after the restart when Cole was sent to the sin-bin for a professional foul. It took the visitors less than a minute to take advantage of the extra man when Morgans was held up a metre short of the line, before lock Rhys Jones crashed over to score. Langdon converted to give his side the lead for the first time.


Replacement scrum half Elliot Jones strayed in front of a chip to the corner by Langdon and Clement opted to kick for territory. Both Rhodri Hughes and Baker were held up on the line, before the All Blacks were able to clear.


Neath were then hit by two successive yellow cards inside two minutes. First flanker Matthew Rees was given his marching orders for offside at the scrum and then replacement prop Nicky Downs was sent to the sidelines for taking a man out in the air at a lineout.


The cards seemed to work in favour of Neath as it meant a move to passive scrums at a time when Swansea had a significant upper hand in that area. The visitors defended heroically for the ten minutes they were two men down and managed to repel wave after wave of Whites attacks.


Neath finished the stronger side with Kevin James almost gathering an Aaron Bramwell chip through near the try line, only for replacement winger Lewis Harrhy to track back to defend. The home side never threatened again and closed out victory by keeping possession inside the Swansea half during the closing stages.


Next up for Swansea is a trip to Cross Keys while Neath travel to Carmarthen.


Full time:-   Swansea   14   Neath   16


Referee:-   Chris Williams

Weather:-   Clear, 5C


Man of the match:-   Chris Morgans


Swansea scorers:


Tries:-   R Williams (4), Cole (21)

Cons:-   Clement (5, 22)


Y cards:-   Cole (45)


Neath scorers:


Tries:-   R Jones (46)

Cons:-   Langdon (47)

Pens:-   Langdon (12, 28, 33)


Y cards:-   Rees (63), Downs (64)


Swansea team:

15 Rhys Williams (rep: Lewis Harrhy 68)

14 Chris Shelmerdine

13 Ben Roberts

12 Nicky Harwood

11 Liam Price (rep: Ben Fox 72)

10 Cameron Clement (rep: Aled Lewis 57)

9 Jake Cole (rep: Will Batcup 68)

1 Matthew Norman (rep: Nicky Smith 61)

2 Paul John (rep: Andrew Littlehales 68)

3 Ian Williams (rep: Aled Mason 61)

4 Sam Kiley ©

5 Rhodri Hughes

6 Rob Dudley-Jones

7 James Bija (rep: David Leonard 61)

8 Dan Baker


16 Andrew Littlehales

17 Nicky Smith

18 Aled Mason

19 Ben Fox

20 David Leonard

21 Will Batcup

22 Aled Lewis

23 Lewis Harrhy


Neath team:

15 Aaron Bramwell

14 Kevin James

13 Ryan Evans

12 John Leyshon

11 Chris Morgans

10 David Langdon

9 Ben Jones (rep: Elliot Jones 41)

1 Owain Ford (rep: Nicky Downs 57)

2 Rhodri Clancy (rep: Alun Wyn Davies 78)

3 Tom Price

4 Rhys Jones

5 Jonny Griffiths

6 Lee Evans ©

7 Matthew Rees

8 Rhys Williams (rep: Leon Ward 72)




16 Nicky Downs

17 Alun Wyn Davies

18 Leon Ward

19 Stefan Jones

20 Elliot Jones

21 Kyle Davies

22 Luc Jones



Attendance: 1000

Official : Chris Williams (Wales)

Swansea Neath