Conwy Land Rover North Wales Cup Quarter Final
Caernarfon found the barrier set by this competent and clinical Pwllheli outfit too high to overcome in this much awaited Conwy Land Rover North Wales Cup quarter final tie.
The opening exchanges were evenly fought with both forwards and backs testing the opposition. Caernarfon stand off Carwyn Roberts showed some nice touches to put the home side on the front foot and two attempted penalties from the boot of Dom Yau drifted just wide of the uprights during the first eight minutes. It soon became apparent however that no change would be given from this Llŷn outfit so every opportunity presented needed to be capitalised upon.
A Pwllheli penalty effort rebounded off the upright but the Cofis were contained within their danger zone and when the advancing maul was brought to ground illegally the Pwllheli eight opted for a scrum and after once being held up beyond the try line following the reset a miss pass allowed Kevin Morris to squeeze over. Osian Parry Jones slotted the conversion to extend the points tally to seven with sixteen minutes played.
There followed a series of contentious decisions that only a video ref could have deliberated upon but both teams could be congratulated for not complaining and getting on with the game. The first followed a Kelemete kick ahead that centre John Pugh thought that he had grounded within the field of play. To Caernarfon's annoyance the same player made no mistake a few minutes later when a Caernarfon lost ball was seized upon by wing Robin Hughes Jones who then found Pugh on his outside in space to run in and score out wide.
Pugh and Caernarfon wing Dylan Gwyn more or less jointly grounded under the posts minutes later with the home team being given the benefit.
Caernarfon tried desperately to stem the tide, tacking quick penalties in an effort to disrupt the oppositions defence and a classic scrum half break by Bryn Granville nearly brought just reward on the half hour mark only to be brought to ground just short. Another four phases of attack followed but the Pwllheli defence held firm. Soon another Cofi error and a spilt ball saw Dafydd Anwyl canter away before finding Tom Parry at his side to dash to the try line and with parry Jones's conversion bring the first half to a close at nineteen points to nil.
Caernarfon needed the first score of the second half but conceded a penalty that Parry Jones once again converted. Wing Dylan Gwyn came close for the Cofis and following one or two other concerted drives by the forwards with no rewards it became apparent that this was not going to be their day. The Pwllheli pack was effective in all facets with Caron Jones deserving of special praise for his all round athleticism and commitment. Kalim Kelemete charged through from thirty metres but was held up and Pugh minutes later was just bundled into touch in time. Then with ten minutes remaining a concerted forward drive over thirty metres crossed the whitewash with Dafydd Anwyl surfacing with ball in hand after the official had signalled a conclusive grounding. Parry Jones once more added the extras.
Minutes later he completed his personal tally of twelve points with another well struck penalty.
Caernarfon to their credit mounted one last effort and were camped on the opposition line for some two or three minutes but the Llŷn brigade were by then adamant that their line would not be crossed.
With the final minute approaching Pwllheli found themselves at the opposite end of the field and concluded proceedings with a push over try courtesy of Number 8 Tom Parry.
As one team member said after the final whistle 'job done' and it would be difficult to bet against that comment not being repeated after the semi final and possibly the final on this showing.
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