Ospreys secure derby win at Parc y Scarlets

Rob LloydNews

Scarlets failed to make their first-half dominance count as they fell to a 25-11 defeat to arch rivals the Ospreys in the West Wales derby at Parc y Scarlets.

Despite bossing possession and territory in the opening 40 minutes, the home side were unable to make a dent on the scoreboard, and although Gareth Davies scored a trademark opportunist interception early after the restart, Ospreys took a grip on the contest to celebrate their first league win in Llanelli since 2015.

It was a frustrating night for Dwayne Peel and his side in front of a bumper Boxing Day crowd of 11,282.

They were unable to turn pressure into points and ultimately paid the price. Ioan Lloyd had an uncharacteristic off night in front of goal; Gareth Davies was held up over the line, Teddy Leatherbarrow and Sam Lousi were inches away, while a golden chance was missed in the final play of the first half.

Two minutes after the break, the crowd were on their feet when Davies pounced on a stray Ospreys pass to outstrip the cover from 55 minutes, but the Ospreys then turned the game on its head.

A couple of penalties led to pressure on the Scarlets line and scrum-half Reuben Morgan-Williams sniped blindside to level the scores. Owen Williams converted and added a penalty to extend the lead.

The fly-half then nailed a sweetly-struck drop-goal to make it 13-5.

When centre Owen Watkin was sin-binned following a warning by referee Craig Evans, Lloyd reduced the arrears with a penalty, but after Josh Macleod saw yellow, back came the Ospreys with another short-range score by replacement hooker Sam Parry.

Replacement Ben Williams was denied a try in the corner late on, but Lloyd did convert another penalty to make it 18-11 with a minute remaining.

However, from the kick-off, Scarlets, running the ball from deep, spilled possession and Jack Walsh gratefully pounced to secure the victory. 

Scarlets are back in URC action on New Year’s Day when they take on the Dragons at Rodney Parade.

Scarlets – try: G. Davies. Pens: I. Lloyd (2).

Ospreys – tries: R. Morgan-Williams, S. Parry, J. Walsh. Cons: O. Williams (2). Pen: Williams; D-g: Williams.

Scarlets: Ioan Nicholas; Tom Rogers, Joe Roberts (repl Jonathan Davies 71), Johnny Williams, Ryan Conbeer; Ioan Lloyd, Gareth Davies (repl Kieran Hardy 60); Kemsley Mathias (repl Wyn Jones 57), Ryan Elias (repl Shaun Evans 73), Sam Wainwright (repl Joe Jones 72), Alex Craig, Jac Price (repl Morgan Jones 57), Sam Lousi (repl Ben Williams 53), Teddy Leatherbarrow, Josh Macleod (capt).

Attendance: 11,282

Referee: Craig Evans (WRU)