Sunday, February 5, 2017

Ebbw Vale 24 Cardiff 20, Principality Premiership, 31/12/16

Ebbw Vale put themselves in pole position to make the top eight cut for the 2nd half of the Premiership season by closing out this sense win over a tremendously committed, young Cardiff side.

Trailing 17-20, and with the clock approaching 80 minutes, Ebbw Vale stuck to the tried and tested power scrum to deliver a knockout blow, as the continued collapsing of the set piece by Cardiff led to the inevitable penalty try and conversion.

With just one play left, the Black and Blues threw everything at Ebbw and kept hammering away at the try line at the cricket pitch end of Eugene Cross Park, constantly recycling possession and tapping the penalties which the Steelmen conceded. Eventually, after nearly 13 minutes and with 2017 fast approaching in the gathering gloom, Ebbw's brilliant defence forced a misdemeanor from the attacking side, and the penalty kick was duly dispatched into the river.

In the first half, Cardiff 10 Gareth Thompson scored a charge-down try and converted this, as well as 2 other penalties. Josh Lewis goaled two penalties for Ebbw, but the home side trailed 6-13 at half time. Playing towards the beer, a Harri Keddie try plus another two Lewis penalties made it 17-13, before Cardiff hit back with Ceri Young crossing and Thompson converting, hence setting up the barnstorming finish.

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