Division Three West A: Llanybydder 28-31 Neyland

Neyland had to overcome some bizarre circumstances before notching a thrilling bonus point win in Llanybydder.

Their squad has been stretched of late, and it showed again yesterday with coaches Graham ‘gaga’ Richards and ‘retired’ players Chris Busby and Matthew Williams making up their four replacements!

And the latter two both had late run outs, with Williams joining sons Ben and George on the pitch by replacing prop Craig Power, who managed to play for over an hour in gloomy conditions despite losing both contact lenses.

The opening stages were intense as home scrum half Llyr James intercepted a pass from Neyland No 10 George Evans and went from his own 22 to score, and Llyr Tobias converted.

But from the kick off Neyland responded as winger Henry McBeth notched a try in the corner, and then from a scrum on half way No 8 Ben Williams and scrum half Jack Richards combined to set up full back Patrick Bellerby – who cut into the line with venom and went under the posts. Evans converted.

And just moments later the same move produced another try, although this time it was McBeth to cross after Bellerby was hauled down just short.

That made it 17-7 and yet it was still The Bydder who led half time, as No 8 Steff Richards powered over for two tries that former Cardigan player Tobias converted.

The pace continued in the second half though as Neyland hooker Gavin Campbell went over and Evans converted, and then a big hit by Williams helped the All Blacks turn defence into attack – and both centres Alex Codd and George Williams took turns to hack the loose ball on before it was Codd who touched down and Evans again did the honours.

Still the home side, or indeed Richards, weren’t done and after Evans was yellow carded for a deliberate knock on, the home captain got his try hat trick and Tobias converted to set up a tense finish.

But Neyland held on in what team manager Peter Davies called a ‘brilliant game of rugby’.