Fourteen-man Scarlets sneak dramatic late winner

Tue, 26 Dec 2017 19:58
Large scarlets v ospreys 800

PRO14 MATCH REPORT: Josh Macleod's dramatic last-gasp score sent Scarlets back to the top of Conference B with a hard-fought Welsh derby victory over Ospreys.

Needing a try to win the match, a kick over the top fell perfectly to the replacement, who gleefully charged over the line in a sensational finale for the sold-out Parc y Scarlets crowd.

The champions had to do it with 14 men too, with Steff Evans sent off for a tackle in the air after he had scored what had been the game's only try.

Ospreys, bottom of Conference A, had threatened to upset the formbook, but three Sam Davies penalties were not quite enough to pick up a third win of the Pro14 season.

The persistent rain made it difficult for either side to play running rugby as the scoreboard was unmoved in the early stages, despite Leigh Halfpenny's best efforts from the tee.

But Scarlets did take the lead with some neat work, first forcing their visitors to knock-on in their own in-goal area for a five-metre scrum.

From there they made the pressure count, the ball falling loose at the base of the scrum to allow scrumhalf Gareth Davies to find Evans to weave his way over the line for the first points.

It seemed the score would remain that way to the break, but Sam Davies got his side back in contention with a penalty, the first successful kick of the match to narrow the gap to two points.

By that time Scarlets had seen their numbers diminish, try-scorer Evans going for a high-ball but colliding with counterpart Ben John in the air to find himself sent-off.

With numerical advantage, Ospreys started on the front foot in the second half and took the lead for the first time in the match with 51 minutes on the clock, Davies kicking his second penalty of the contest for a 6-5 scoreline.

From attack came very important defence for the side bottom of Conference A of the Pro14, but standing firm and keeping Scarlets at bay seemed to give the visiting side lots of confidence.

That was rewarded with three more points, again from Davies, with Justin Tipuric the man to thank after isolating the home defence, the gap now extended to four, crucial points heading into the last 20 minutes.

That was how it stayed heading into the final ten minutes, with Scarlets pulling the rabbit out of the hat with Macleod's late try, duly converted by Halfpenny to take the Welsh outfit back above Leinster in Conference B.

The scorers:

For Scarlets:
S Evans, Macleod
Con: Halfpenny

For Ospreys:
S Davies 3

Red card: Steff Evans (Scarlets, 36)


Scarlets: 15 Leigh Halfpenny, 14 Johnny McNicholl, 13 Scott Williams, 12 Hadleigh Parkes, 11 Steff Evans, 10 Dan Jones, 9 Gareth Davies, 8 John Barclay, 7 James Davies, 6 Aaron Shingler, 5 David Bulbring, 4 Tadhg Beirne, 3 Werner Kruger, 2 Ken Owens (captain), 1 Rob Evans.
Replacements: 16 Ryan Elias, 17 Wyn Jones, 18 Simon Gardiner, 19 Steven Cummins, 20 Josh Macleod, 21 Aled Davies, 22 Rhys Patchell, 23 Paul Asquith.

Ospreys: 15 Dan Evans, 14 Ben John, 13 Kieron Fonotia, 12 Owen Watkin, 11 Jeff Hassler, 10 Sam Davies, 9 Tom Habberfield, 8 Olly Cracknell, 7 Justin Tipuric, 6 Dan Lydiate, 5 Alun Wyn Jones (captain), 4 Bradley Davies, 3 Dmitri Arhip, 2 Scott Baldwin, 1 Nicky Smith.
Replacements: 16 Scott Otten, 17 Paul James, 18 Ma'afu Fia, 19 Adam Beard, 20 Rob McCusker, 21 Rhys Webb, 22 Dan Biggar, 23 Ashley Beck.

Referee: Ian Davies (Wales)
Assistant referees: Ben Whitehouse, Craig Evans (Wales)
TMO: Tim Hayes (Wales)

Source: @PRO14Official

There are currently no matches being played
Fri, 23 March 2018
Crusaders v Bulls 06h35 Christchurch
Rebels v Sharks 08h45 Melbourne
Connacht v Edinburgh 19h35 Sportsground
Dragons v Cheetahs 19h35 Rodney Parade
Glasgow Warriors v Zebre 19h35 Scotstoun
Bath v Exeter Chiefs 19h45 Recreation Ground
Sat, 24 March 2018
Sunwolves v Chiefs 04h15 Tokyo
Hurricanes v Highlanders 06h35 Wellington
Kings v Treviso 13h00 Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium
London Irish v Gloucester 15h00 Madejski Stadium
Saracens v Harlequins 15h00 London
Sale Sharks v Worcester Warriors 15h00 AJ Bell Stadium
Stormers v Reds 15h15 Newlands
Cardiff Blues v Ulster 15h15 Cardiff Arms Park
Munster v Scarlets 17h30 Thomond Park
Newcastle Falcons v Northampton Saints 17h30 Kingston Park
Ospreys v Leinster 19h35 Liberty Stadium
Jaguares v Lions 19h40 Estadio Jose Amalfitani
Sun, 25 March 2018
Leicester Tigers v Wasps 15h00 Welford Road
Pool A
Team P W D L Pts
Glasgow Warriors 16 13 1 2 65
Munster 17 10 0 7 54
Cheetahs 17 9 0 8 47
Cardiff Blues 17 9 0 8 42
Connacht 17 6 0 11 33
Ospreys 16 6 0 10 30
Zebre 16 4 0 12 22
Pool B
Team P W D L Pts
Leinster 17 13 1 3 64
Scarlets 17 12 1 4 61
Edinburgh 17 12 0 5 55
Ulster 16 9 1 6 46
Treviso 17 8 0 9 40
Dragons 17 2 2 13 17
Kings 17 1 0 16 9