Tryline and Touchline...
Tryline action from Swansea v Llanharan. Laua Kerslake catches up with Swansea MOTM RICHARD THOMAS post-match.
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By: Paul Hopkins
The All Whites used their squad to great effect as they eased to a 12-try victory over bottom side Llanharan.
With the visitors unable to field a recognised front row, they were penalised according to a Swalec Championship ruling, which meant they could not select any replacements for the match, in exchange for passive scrums.
It took the All Whites just two minutes to get their first try as they used their backs to good effort to get the ball out to full back Liam Popham, who touched down in the corner. Fly half Phil Jones missed the conversion.
Hooker Ricky Guest then charged through the middle to start an attack, and he got the ball out wide, only for Popham to be tackled into touch a metre short of the line.
While Swansea clearly had the upper hand up front, they didn’t let the passive scrums slow them down and they scored a second try when centre David Watts burst through the defence from a set piece to score under the posts. Jones converted.
The visitors at last mounted an attack through fly half Scott Jones, but the forwards were slow to reach him and he was turned over.
Winger Andrew Claypole then scored a superb try when he first raced upfield from the twenty-two, twisting and turning out of a couple of tackles, before being held up on half way. The forwards were in support and drove play forward, and the ball was swept out wide for Claypole to score. Jones missed the conversion.
Fellow winger Richard Thomas was unlucky not to score in the corner after he raced past the Llanharan defence, but he lost the ball forward at the vital moment.
Swansea’s bonus point try came after 32 minutes when they got the ball quickly out of a scrum and used their backs to send centre Elliott Clement over for a touchdown. Jones missed the conversion.
Three minutes later the visitors grabbed an unlikely try when Whites scrum half Matthew Aubrey’s kick was charged down into the grateful hands of Jones, who collected to score. He converted his own try.
Aubrey had another kick charged down inside the Llanharan half, but this time it rebounded off a visiting defender into the hands of Jones, who raced clear to score. He missed the conversion attempt.
Half-time:- Swansea 27 Llanharan 7
It took Swansea just seven minutes after the interval score their sixth try when Guest charged through the middle and got the ball out to Jones, who split the defence, before firing a pass out wide to Thomas, who scored. Jones kicked the conversion.
Thomas scored his second try moments later following a well worked lineout that saw Jones throw a pass for him to touch down. Jones converted.
Number eight Rory Gallagher then raced out of defence, and drew in the man to send Popham over for an easy try. Jones missed the conversion.
Replacement hooker Ollie Young then got in on the act as he showed great strength out wide to stay in play and touch down in the corner. Jones’ conversion attempt sailed wide of the posts.
Claypole used his pace to sprint through midfield and he found replacement flanker Jon Fox in support, who in turn found prop Mitchell Walsh, who raced clear to score. Jones converted.
Popham completed his hat trick of tries when he ghosted past weak Llanharan tackling to score under the posts. Jones converted.
Swansea rounded off a clinical victory when flanker Jack Perkins took a quick tap penalty and got the ball out wide for Thomas to score. Popham missed the conversion.
Next up for Swansea is a trip to Newcastle Emlyn, while Llanharan host Newbridge.
Full time:- Swansea 70 Llanharan 7
Tries:- Liam Popham (2, 53, 67), David Watts (7), Andrew Claypole (17), Elliott Clement (34), Phil Jones (40), Richard Thomas (47, 51), Ollie Young (54), Mitchell Walsh (61), Mike Sully (77)
Cons:- Phil Jones (8, 48, 52, 62, 68)
Tries:- Scott Jones (37)
Cons:- Scott Jones (38)
Venue:- St Helen’s, Swansea
Referee:- Simon Mills
Weather:- Partly cloudy, 6C
Man of the match:- Richard Thomas
15 Liam Popham
14 Andrew Claypole
13 Elliott Cameron
12 David Watts (rep: Josh Flye 52)
11 Richard Thomas
10 Phil Jones
9 Matthew Aubrey (rep: Scott Maynard 64)
1 Dan Kenny (rep: Richard Murphy 52)
2 Ricky Guest (rep: Ollie Young 52)
3 Mitchell Walsh
4 Gavin Ronan
5 Jon Fox
6 Andrew Hughes
7 Jack Perkins
8 Rory Gallagher (rep: Mike Sully 58)
16 Ollie Young
17 Richard Murphy
18 Mike Sully
19 Scott Maynard
20 Josh Flye
15 Harrison Evans
14 Chris Sharkey
13 Olly Smyth
12 Liam Union
11 Gavin Parsons
10 Scott Jones
9 Craig Burton
1 James Holmes
2 Tom Evans
3 Paul Winters
4 Owain Howe
5 Kieran Martin
6 Richard Lawrence
7 Scott Malone
8 Tom Wilson
No replacements permitted due to Llanharan being unable to field a qualified front row.