Under-18s narrowly defeated by leaders


Dragons Under-18s were edged out 17-15 by leaders Ospreys Under-18s in the Regional Age Grade Championship at Ystrad Mynach on Wednesday evening.

The home side scored tries through back row duo Evan Minto and Kobi Rees but were denied a late win as the visitors just held out.

The visitors started on the front foot and Ospreys hooker Finley Thomas opened the scoring when he burrowed over after three minutes after powerful driving maul.

Dragons hit back at the midpoint of the half when a series of forward surges was finished off by a powerful run by Number Eight Evan Minto. Jack Woods converted to draw the teams level.

Minto was yellow carded soon afterwards, but the home side continued to carry a threat with Harry Rees-Weldon and Oli Woodman both unfortunate as they raced down the wing.

Superb vision from Woods at the start of the second period nearly picked out Rees-Weldon but the cross-field kick skipped away from the wing.

A second home try arrived after sublime footwork from Ioan Duggan left Ospreys defenders in his wake and he sent flanker Kobi Rees over in the corner.

The visitors, though, hit back with another driving maul try as Seb Rodriguez-Davies went over for a slender 14-12 lead.

Ospreys were reduced to 14 men as Jack Hoskins was yellow carded and Woods nudged over a penalty for the lead.

Ospreys hit back with a penalty of their own while Woods saw an effort slip wide after great turnover work from Louis Pullen.

Late drama saw Dragons break with the final play but after collecting a chip and spreading ball wide the Ospreys cover defence just shunted Rees-Weldon into touch as he went for the corner.

Dragons Under-18s: Oli Woodman (Monmouth Haberdashers & Chepstow RFC), Harry Rees-Weldon (Coleg Gwent & Ebbw Vale RFC), Tye Davies (c) (Hartpury College & Cwmbran RFC), Oscar Watkins (Monmouth Haberdashers & Alton RFC), Ioan Duggan (CWM Rhymni & Bargoed RFC), Jack Woods (Monmouth Haberdashers & Risca RFC), Logan Franklin (Newbridge RFC); Taran Moa (Llandovery College & Cwmbran RFC), Tomoya Adachi (Clifton College & Whiteheads RFC), Alex Uwimana (Newport High Schoool & Pill Harriers RFC), Dan Wall (Newport High School & Machen RFC), Nick Thomas (Hartpury College & St Peters RFC), Guy Thomas (Monmouth Haberdashers), Kobi Rees (Coleg Gwent & Blackwood RFC), Evan Minto (Hartpury College & Pontypool United).

Replacements: Regan Jones (Monmouth Haberdashers & Cwmbran RFC), George Tuckley (Monmouth Haberdashers & Abergavenny RFC), Josh Gay (Coleg Gwent & Ebbw Vale RFC), Evan Barber (Coleg Gwent & Blackwood RFC), Louis Pullen (Newport High School & Newport HSOB), Toby Thomas (Newport High School & Machen RFC), Harri Ford (Coleg Gwent & Sengenydd RFC), Dray Jack-Griffin (Newport High & Cwmbran RFC).

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