By: Paul Hopkins
Swansea continued their outstanding form with a comfortable win over Llanelli in the festive West Wales derby.
It was the home side who embarked on the first attack and Will Griffiths collected a close range lineout to send fellow lock Jay Williams crashing over for the opening try. Fly half J Rhys Williams converted.
The Whites’ second try came from a calamitous error at the lineout. Number eight Jon Fox picked up loose possession at the tail and threw a short pass to J Rhys Williams, who touched down under the posts. He also converted.
Despite the early setback it was Llanelli who dominated at the scrum in the early stages and scrum half Declan Smith cut the gap with a penalty goal after the Swansea pack was driven off the ball.
The visitors attempted to attack from deep and full back Clayton Blommitjies chased down a chip through, but flanker Ellis Thomas failed to release the ball after the tackle.
Scrum half Matthew Aubrey found touch deep inside the Llanelli twenty-two with a penalty and an unstoppable maul saw Fox crash over for a try. J Rhys Williams converted.
Centre Jonny Lewis was penalised for holding onto possession after the tackle and J Rhys Williams kicked the three pointer.
Another lengthy touch finder by Aubrey gave the home side one final attack before half time, but Llanelli managed to defend the lineout and forced Swansea into touch.
Half-time:- Swansea 24 Llanelli 3
The theme of Swansea attacks continued in the second half as the home forwards mauled towards the line, only to be illegally brought down. Aubrey turned down a simple kick at goal to chip to the corner and number eight Joe Miles was yellow carded for a professional foul.
Despite the man advantage up front, the Whites were unable to recycle possession from the maul and were turned over.
Winger Tom Rogers spilled a high ball into the arms of opposite number Ben Cambriani, but centre Jedd Evans failed to make him pay as his kick drifted infield and was dealt with by the visitors.
Llanelli were awarded a penalty after the Whites’ defence crept offside in midfield. Fly half Steff Hughes kicked to the corner and from the lineout flanker Ellis Thomas powered over for a try. Smith converted.
Swansea secured a bonus point when Will Griffiths charged down a chip through and winger Ryan Griffiths raced over halfway. He found replacement winger Gareth Rees, who sprinted into the twenty-two and threw a short pass to send Aubrey over for a try. J Rhys Williams converted.
The Whites almost rounded off a perfect victory when Rees sprinted down the wing, but his chip into midfield was dealt with by Rogers, who managed to clear to touch.
Centre Tom Williams rounded off the victory with a superb solo effort as he ghosted past two tacklers to score under the posts. J Rhys Williams converted.
Full-time:- Swansea 38 Llanelli 10
Tries:- Jay Williams (3), J Rhys Williams (13), Jon Fox (28), Matthew Aubrey (63), Tom Williams (80+3)
Cons:- J Rhys Williams (4, 14, 29, 64, 80+4)
Pens:- J Rhys Williams (33)
Tries:- Ellis Thomas (56)
Cons:- Declan Smith (57)
Pens:- Declan Smith (18)
Yellow cards:- Joe Miles (45)
Venue:- St Helen’s, Swansea
Weather:- Cloudy, 11C
Man of the match:- J Rhys Williams
15 R Rhys Williams
14 Ryan Griffiths
13 Tom Williams
12 Jedd Evans (rep: Kieran Charles 75)
11 Ben Cambriani (rep: Gareth Rees 52)
10 J Rhys Williams
9 Matthew Aubrey (rep: Chris Morgans 75)
1 Rhys Davies (rep: Tom Sloane 49)
2 Paul John (rep: Ifan Phillips 49)
3 Mitchell Walsh (rep: Richard Murphy 49)
4 Jay Williams
5 Will Griffiths (rep: Sam Kiley 67)
6 Morgan Morris
7 Callum Bowden
8 Jon Fox © (rep: Will Jones 52)
16 Ifan Phillips
17 Tom Sloane
18 Richard Murphy
19 Sam Kiley
20 Will Jones
21 Chris Morgans
22 Kieran Charles
23 Gareth Rees
15 Clayton Blommitjies (rep: Ashley Sutton 80)
14 Tom Rogers
13 Ryan Davies
12 Jonny Lewis (rep: Oliver Reyland 64)
11 Kalum Evans
10 Steff Hughes
9 Declan Smith (rep: Gareth George 64)
1 Rhys Fawcett (rep: Rhys Thomas 74)
2 Taylor Davies (rep: Rhys Cherry 74)
3 Ryan Thomas (rep: Liam Tobias 80)
4 Chris Long (rep: Jake Baker 54)
5 Ashleigh Hyndman
6 Ellis Thomas
7 Nathan Hart ©
8 Joe Miles (rep: Joel James 64)
16 Rhys Cherry
17 Rhys Thomas
18 Liam Tobias
19 Jake Baker
20 Joel James
21 Gareth George
22 Oliver Reyland
23 Ashley Sutton