Cardiff Blues Premiership Select XV (CBPS) launched the British and Irish Cup with a draw against Nottingham Rugby at BT Sport Cardiff Arms Park.
It was an impressive opening half for the home side as they showed their dominance early in the game. In the first half, CBPS played with the elements in their favour, while Nottingham had to deal with the rain in their faces; making it hard to handle high balls.
With only 13 minutes of play CBPS were rewarded for their efforts, when centre Adam Thomas set up Richard Smith to cross the whitewash. Gareth Davies added the extra points to give CBPS a 7 point lead. CBPS’ second try came when Nottingham yielded possession on their own 22 allowing Owen Jenkins to touchdown close to the posts.
A high tackle on Ethan Lewis by Nottingham’s centre Viliami Hakalo gave Gareth Davies the chance to widen CBPS’ lead before half time. The penalty gave CBPS a 17-0 first half lead.
Nottingham went on the offensive in the second half and in the 45th minute it was wing Pila Longi, who gave them their first try. Outside Half Lawrence Rayner added the extra points.
Nottingham took advantage of the strong wind as Rayner slotted two long range penalties to narrow CBPS’ lead. After a number of strong phases by Nottingham it was Rayner who again added the points when he touched down under the posts. Rayner kicked the conversion giving the visitors a three point lead.
Nottingham did not have the lead for long with Gareth Davies successfully kicking another penalty to level the scores.
The final minutes of the game CBPS spent defending in their own half. Rayner attempted a last minute drop goal to seal a win for the visitors but the ball went wide of the posts leaving the score 20-20.
12m R Smith t 5-0 Davies c 7-0
27m O Jenkins t Davies c 14-0
33m Davies c 17-0
43m Longi t Rayner c 17-7
45 Rayner p 17-10
47m Rayner p 17-13
54m Rayner t Rayner c 17-20
63m Davies p 20-20
Cardiff Blues Premiership Select: 15 Harry Davies, 14 Richard Smith, 13 Garyn Smith, 12 Adam Thomas (Rees-Hole 70), 11 Owen Jenkins, 10 Gareth Davies, 9 Lewis Jones; 1 Bradley Thyer (Assiratti 56/ Thyer 61), 2 Ethan Lewis (Breeze 45), 3 Scott Andrews, 4 Miles Normandale (Lewis-Hughes 61), 5 Chris Dicomidis, 6 Macauley Cook, 7 Ben Roach (Sheekey 53), 8 Jevon Groves (c)
Replacements: 16 Marc Breeze, 17 Kieron Assiratti, 18 James Sheekey, 19 Shane Lewis Hughes, 20 Mike Hale, 21 James Thomas, 22 Will Rees-Hole