Preview: Llanelli v Aberavon

Aberavon (1st) travel to Parc y Scarlets to take on Llanelli (6th) in the Indigo Group Premiership Cup this Saturday, kick-off at 2:30 pm.

The West Walians have had a tough season so far with them losing all five of their games. They started their season with a 17 – 43 loss at Aberavon before picking up a losing bonus point at home to Bridgend (18 – 21). Two away games followed with Llanelli losing at Llandovery (12 – 39) and then Swansea (15 – 53). Last weekend, they lost 24 – 27 at home to Carmarthen Quins.

Looking at the Premiership Cup, in “attack”, Llanelli have scored 17.2 points on average per game (ranked 6th) and 2.8 tries (ranked 3rd). In “defence” they have conceded 36.6 points on average per game (ranked 6th) and 4.8 tries (ranked 6th). Aberavon have scored 27.6 points per game (ranked 1st) and 3.6 tries (ranked joint 1st), and conceded 14.6 points (ranked 2nd) and 1.4 tries (ranked 1st).

Looking back to the 2003-04 season, when Aberavon met Llanelli at Stradey Park, Llanelli outside half Ceiron Thomas and his opposite number Jamie Davies traded penalties before Daran Griffiths scored a try at the end of the opening quarter. Davies converted and kicked another penalty after half-hour to give the Wizards a 13 – 3 lead. However, a try by wing Daniel Rogers and conversion by Thomas saw Aberavon’s lead reduce to just 3 points at the interval. The home side took the lead early in the second half when full-back Lee Byrne released centre Richard Davies for an unconverted try. A third Davies penalty helped the Wizards retake the lead before Richard Lewis scored a try in the corner. Davies added the extras to give the Wizards a 23 – 15 lead after 64 minutes. Rogers scored his second try of the game soon after with Thomas converting to reduce Aberavon’s lead to just one point. Ricky Price scored the Wizards third try of the game in the last ten minutes of the game. Thomas and Davies traded further penalties late on with the Aberavon holding out to win 31 – 25 despite playing the last ten minutes down to 14 players.

The Wizards team that day was: Richard Lewis; Daran Griffiths, Aled James, Gareth Jones (rep Darren Ryan), Ricky Price; Jamie Davies, Dan Hawkins; Dinlle Francis (rep Mike Harris), James Jones (rep Jon Owen), Paul Breeze, Steve Rees (rep Dafydd Owen), Chris Gittins, Jamie Summers (rep Matthew Powell), Richard Morris, Steffan Edwards.

The referee for Saturday’s game is Stephen Allsop, aided by Wayne Davies and Colin Kirkhouse.