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Saturday, 30 March, 2002, 16:14 GMT
Five-star Scarlets sink Ravens
Leigh Davies makes a break through the Bridgend defence
Llanelli's Leigh Davies takes on the Bridgend defence
Principality Cup quarter-final
Llanelli 46-24 Bridgend

Llanelli survived an early scare to book their 23rd semi-final place in 31 years in a see-saw match of swiftly changing fortunes.

The Scarlets, record 11-time winners of the trophy, had to come from behind more than once to see off their stylish opponents.

  Scoring details
Llanelli (18) 46:
Tries: G Evans, M Jones, I Boobyer (2), G Bowen
Cons: S. Jones (3)
Pens: S Jones (5)
Bridgend (21) 24:
Tries: Durston, Havili
Con: Warlow
Pens: Warlow (4)
Att: 4,500

With Gareth Thomas and Dafydd James in fine form, Bridgend always looked capable of matching the home side for pace among the backs.

But the pack always found the hard graft up front tough going and gradually ran out of steam.

The visitors built a 21-18 lead after a superb first half with early tries from Adrian Durston and Aesea Havili putting them 12-3 ahead inside a quarter of an hour.

Llanelli replied spectacularly with two tries in four minutes by flanker Ian Boobyer.

Accurate goal-kicking from fly-half Craig Warlow kept Bridgend just ahead until the Scarlets moved up a gear early in the second half.

Llanelli's Gareth Bowen grabs his side's fifth and final try
Gareth Bowen scores despite Dafydd James' tackle
A seven-minute purple patch brought them 20 points as Stephen Jones kicked his third and fourth penalties and tries by Mark Jones and Garan Evans completely changed the picture.

Fly-half Jones went on to complete a haul of 20 points and Bridgend found possession and points drying up in a rousing finale in which pace and confidence took its toll.

There was little they could do to prevent replacement Gareth Bowen from scoring the Scarlets' fifth try deep in injury time.

Llanelli's semi-final opponents at the Millennium Stadium on 13 April will be the winners of the final quarter-final tie between Ebbw Vale and Pontypool.


Llanelli: G Evans; M Jones, N Boobyer, L Davies, S Finau; S Jones (capt), G Easterby; M Madden, R McBryde, J Davies, V Cooper, C Wyatt, D Jones, I Boobyer, D Hodges.
Reps: P Booth, M Thomas, L Gross, S Morgan, D Peel, G Bowen, T Selley.

Bridgend: A Durston; Daniel Jones, D James, G Thomas (capt), A Havili; C Warlow, J Hewlett; C Loader, G Williams, C Noon, Deiniol Jones, P Clapham, N Budgett, J Ringer, R Bryan.
Reps: C Rees, H Harries, J Thiel, A Joy, S van Rensburg, K Stewart, M Molitika.

Referee: Paul Adams (Welsh RFU)

 WATCH/LISTEN
 ON THIS STORY
Llanelli coach Gareth Jenkins
"We won a big quarter-final today"
Bridgend skipper Gareth Thomas
"A couple of early injuries hampered us"
Nick Webb reports for BBC Wales
"A cup tie in the best traditions"
Links to more Celtic stories are at the foot of the page.

 

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