Monmouth Druids met Garndiffaith in the semi final of the Rocyn Jones Cup on Chippenham Mead. On a beautiful evening for rugby a good crowd from both clubs thronged the touchline.
Within minutes of the kickoff the Druids had the perfect start. From a scrum on the visitor’s 20 metre line, Scrum Half Gareth Morgan broke on the blind side near the touch line. A quick pass to wing Sam Skipp and he was into his stride. His forceful run saw him burst passed his marker and scorch over the Garndiffaith line and round behind the posts. Matt King converted to give the home side a 7-0 lead.
The Druids were playing all the rugby moving the ball sweetly through the hand and supporting one another. The pack played their part by winning in the contact area whilst edging the scrums and lineouts. A long, strong run from Matt King lead to another score. Quick possession and passing saw Right Wing Tom Cratchley dive over in the corner for an unconverted try.
Sam Skipp was looking dangerous every time he touched the ball and it was him who scored the next try. Given a early pass, Skipp used his long legs to drive through 3 or 4 would be tacklers to cross for a well taken try. Matt King converted and the Druids lead 19-0.
King further extended the lead through a penalty goal from 25 metres.
A fourth try from the Druids looked likely as Garndiffaith struggled to hold the home side. From a set piece, the threequarters handled skilfully and moved the ball along the line. A Monmouth player was tackled just short of the try line. Hooker Ed White was on hand to pick up and dive over to make the score 27-0.
Just before the interval, Garndiffaith scored their first try from a move coming from the back of a scrum and a rolling maul. Their scrum half converted to make the score at half time 27-7 in favour of the home side.
The second period started with Skipp almost getting a hat trick. Matt King made a fine break but his pass to Skipp was judged to be forward as he was about to touch down.
The Druids were not to be denied and again from good slick handling, Substitute wing Jake Meredith crossed in the corner for a try which was not improved.
Garndiffaith made a late comeback with a try from a 5 metre scrum which was not converted.
So a resounding 32-12 victory and the final to look forward to. Its the old adage, the forwards decide if you win the game and the backs by how much. The first half display saw points on the board and the second half keeping the game in check. In the pack Captain Chris Davies led from the front and the back row of Dan Anstey, Milo Thomas and Gareth Morgan foraged relentlessly.
Behind the scrum, Sam Skipp, Matt King and Greg Wilding did well and Full Back Huw Adams was rock solid. Now for the final.
Tries: S.Skipp(2), T,Cratchley, E.White, J.Meredith
Conv: M.King (2)