Read the latest news on rugby development from Rhondda Cynon Taff as Dale McIntosh writes for cardiffblues.com
CYNON U15s 0 SWANSEA 8
The serious stage of the competition is underway. Every side is now capable of beating each other and this was highly evident in this game. Boasting a big pack, Swansea played into the wind in the first half. Their full-back and captain led the way with some monstrous territorial kicks. The scored the first and only try 15 minutes into the game when Cynon failed to clear their lines. Swansea went wide and scored in the corner. This spurred Cynon on and they threw everything at Swanseas line but were kept out by a good defence.
Trailing by five points at half time Cynon pushed and pushed with the pack ferocious in everything they did. The Cynon line-out and scrum was immaculate but the driving game was sublime. Cynon however, did not play the conditions as well as Swansea. Constant pressure from Cynon was nullified by the monster boot of Swanseas captain courageous, who kicked a penalty with five minutes to go. The result was disappointing but Cynon realise they are not just in with the big boys but they are one of the big boys.
The coaches could not have asked any more of the players; their appetite and passion made the coaches and parents proud.
Tactically, Cynon underachieved but technically were more than efficient.
The players who stood out were D Myles (1) and Rhys Furlong (2) who never stopped working; James Owen and his replacement, Owen Furlong, who commanded the line-out. Jordan Jones, playing out of position at full-back was always solid under the high ball. Making inroads at every opportunity, Marcus Lewis never took a step backwards. The next Game is at Pontypool and the side remain positive. If Cynon beat Pontypool and Cardiff B, the progress to the semi-finals.
Caerphilly Under-13s 5 HOW Under-13s 34
H.O.W. took revenge for their early season home defeat. The started well with an early try by outstanding flanker Ben Jones of Abercwmboi. He formed part of an excellent back-row with Thomas Young and Ieuan Archer of Aberdare. H.O.W. kept their feet on the gas and scored further tries through Lewis Smout, of Brecon (4) and Liam Roberts, of Aberdare.
Josh Lewis of Aberdare, chipped in with a couple of conversions.
The Caerphilly side expected to win and were shocked by the skill and commitment of their H.O.W. counterparts, who are not gelling as a team. In their next game, HOW face Pontypridd, who they beat 60-7 earlier in the season. But they must learn from the mistakes made be Caerphilly in underestimating the opposition.
Cardiff Blues Director of Rugby, Dai Young, commented on the excellent passing out of contact and continuity shown by the young HOW side which augurs well for the last two games of the season.