|Amman captain Andrew Lacey and Man of the Match Gavin Lewis celebrate after the game.|
Amman United retained the West Wales Plate, gaining revenge for missing out on the Four West title when they saw off Llanelli Wanderers 14-7 at Broadacre.
In an evenly contested match, it was United’s outstanding display by the back line that stole it for them, with full back Gavin Lewis producing a dynamic performance as he looked to spring wave after wave of counter attack, producing an excellent try along the way.
The opening encounters were a nervy affair with both teams guilty of handling errors and kicking away possession, but it was the Wanderers that asserted their authority early on with the Four West Champions dominating the set piece to earn a penalty, only for full back Nick Gale to see his long range effort bounce back off the upright.
With the Wanderers continuing to dominate possession, they looked threatening from driving line-outs and only some desperate defending saw them denied the opening score.
However, it was United who sprung the surprise when a loose clearing kick from the Wanderers found Lewis, who went off on a scything run, chipping over the static defence to regather and touchdown beneath the posts. Adrian Thomas slotted the simple conversion to take a 7-0 lead.
The Wanderers were left reeling after conceding the try from out of the blue, but regrouped and once again pressurised the Amman line, with United struggling to repel mauls as they edged closer and closer to the line. It was no surprise then that the Wanderers finally broke their rivals' resistance from a line-out on Amman’s 22, with Simon Peters barging his way over off the back of a well controlled maul. Gale added the extras to tie the score.
|Flanker Simon Peters touches down for the Wanderers.|
Photo courtesy of AlfiePics
With only minutes of the opening half remaining however, it was Amman that finished the stronger, with a chip ahead again causing great confusion in the Wanderers' back three, with Gale forced to touchdown over his own try line. Amman then had a period of solid pressure that resulted in referee Greg Morgan penalising the Wanderers at the scrum and break down, with Peters and Gavin Mathias both sent to the sin bin.
With a two man advantage, United had looked to have worked the overlap perfectly on the blindside, only for wing Dean Williams to knock on with the line at his mercy as the half time whistle blew.
The second half started where the first left off with United desperately trying to make their numerical advantage pay, and at times were perhaps guilty of forcing that extra pass that just failed to find its target. Lewis was once again at the fore of every attack for United with Wanderers kicking to relieve pressure.
Having survived playing almost ten minutes with only 13 players, it was the Wanderers' turn to attack with another driving lineout causing problems for the opposition defence.
Just as they looked to be regaining parity, United struck when a speculative up and under was hoisted, and Karl Evans failed to field, leaving Thomas to send Sean Mangan on his way beneath the posts. Thomas again landed the extras to take a 14-7 lead.
|Sean Mangan races away to seal victory for United.|
Photo courtesy of AlfiePics
Although Wanderers did press in the closing moments, they lacked any invention behind their dominant tight five as they had all match, leaving United able to keep them pinned in their own half for the final few minutes.