Edinburgh power secures Challenge Cup victory at the Parc

Rob LloydNewyddion

Scarlets exited this seasons’ European Challenge Cup with a 31-19 defeat to Edinburgh at Parc y Scarlets

The Scots took a grip on the game in the opening minutes and never relinquished control to secure their place in the knockout stages.

Centre Joe Roberts crossed for a first-half try, while replacement wing Tomi Lewis provided a late spark as Scarlets finished with tries from Ryan Conbeer and a penalty try.

Falling the wrong side of the penalty count, Scarlets were up against it early after conceding two early close-range tries, scored by scrum-half Ben Vellacott and prop WP Nel.

A clever kick through from Steff Evans almost saw Kieran Hardy pounce, but the scrum-half was stopped short by some desperate defence. Hooker David Cherry was shown yellow, though, and from the attacking home scrum, slick hands put Joe Roberts over. Ioan Lloyd was wide with the conversion.

Edinburgh, needing a bonus-point win to progress, refused to allow the Scarlets back, however.

A brilliant take by full-back Emiliano Boffelli saw the Pumas full-back feed Duhan van der Merwe for a third, then fellow Scotland international Hamish Watson was driven over at the posts for the bonus-point try.

Edinburgh co-captain Grant Gilchrist was shown yellow for a high hit on Dan Davis three minutes before the interval, but a resilient Edinburgh defence kept the Scarlets at bay.

Trailing 26-5, Scarlets desperately needed a spark at the beginning of the second half, but the task became even tougher when lock Alex Craig was shown yellow for a high challenge two minutes after the restart.

From the ensuing line-out player-of-the-match Pierre Schoeman was driven over for try number five for the Scots.

Scarlets continued to give the ball plenty of air, but time and again, they came up against a granite wall defence.

Replacement Lewis showed his searing pace with a pacey run down the touchline, but Edinburgh were able to get back to snuff out any threat.

Gilchrist was shown a second yellow for a second high challenge on 72 minutes, but the Scarlets’ night was summed up when Lewis was held up over the line after crossing at the posts.

In the final minute, Conbeer was put away by Roberts for a consolation score, then an attack from deep saw Edinburgh reduced to 13 when van der Merwe was binned for a deliberate knock-on after the dangerous Lewis had again caused problems.

Referee Sara Cox opted to award a penalty try, but the result had long been decided.

Scarlets – try: J. Roberts, R. Conbeer, penalty try. Con: I. Lloyd

Edinburgh – tries: B. Vellacott, WP Nell, D. van der Merwe, H. Watson, P. Schoeman. Cons: B. Healy (3).

Scarlets: Ioan Nicholas (repl Charlie Titcombe 59); Steff Evans (repl Tomi Lewis 50), Joe Roberts, Jonathan Davies, Ryan Conbeer; Ioan Lloyd, Kieran Hardy (repl Gareth Davies 50); Steff Thomas (repl Kemsley Mathias 45), Ryan Elias (capt; repl Eduan Swart 50), Harri O’Connor (repl Sam Wainwright 50), Alex Craig, Jac Price (Morgan Jones 56), Ben Williams (Shaun Evans 69), Dan Davis, Vaea Fifita.

Referee: Sara Cox (England)

Att: 5,993