Cardiff Secured The Welsh Shield With A Dominant Win Over Ospreys

Harry Corish - Sportin Journalist

Cardiff produced a stunning performance to secure a place in the Champions Cup for next season, defeating the Ospreys 38-21 in the second game of Judgement Day 2023.

41,139 supporters flocked to the Welsh capital to watch the four regions compete, but all eyes were on the second game between Cardiff and the Ospreys, as the pair battled for the Welsh Shield and qualification to the Champions Cup.

It was Cardiff who burst into action with early tries from Thomas Young, Max Llewellyn, and Mason Grady in a stunning opening half-hour. The Ospreys hit back early in the second half, as they tried their best to mount a comeback.

However, Cardiff delivered the knockout blow when Williams intercepted a Gareth Anscombe pass to set up Young for Cardiff’s all-important bonus point score under the posts.

The Swansea-based region scored two late tries through Gareth Thomas and Dewi Lake, but Rhys Carre scored a late try to secure a much-needed win for Cardiff.

A clinical Dragons performance gave Dai Flanagan plenty to work on as they achieved their fourth win of the season against an error-laden Scarlets side in the first match at Judgement Day.

Three early tries from Elliott Dee, Jordan Williams, and Sio Tompkinson gave Dai Flanagan’s side the perfect start before a late Steff Hughes try sealed a 31-14 bonus point victory for the men of Gwent following a gritty second-half performance.

It was a nervy opening five minutes for the Scarlets, who lost star man Vaea Fifita to a yellow card before conceding a try, scored by Elliot Dee and converted by Angus O’Brien.

The Dragons took full advantage of the yellow card and were two tries up just two minutes later after some stunning work on the outside from Rio Dyer saw Jordan Williams score easily in the corner, giving the Dragons an early 14-0 lead.

Things went from bad to worse for the Scarlets after conceding a third try in just 16 minutes, with Tompkinson catching the Scarlets defence sleeping.

Although Kieran Hardy added a try on the stroke of the half-time whistle, the Scarlets’ hard work was undone soon after the break when Angus O’Brien added the first points of the second half.

The Scarlets did rally, and after spurning several good chances, Carwyn Tuipolotu scored late on to give his side some hope, but it was too little too late as the Dragons were rewarded late on for their efforts, with former Scarlet Hughes sealing a bonus point victory for the Dragons.

It was a tough Sunday afternoon for the Wales women, who suffered their second defeat in two weeks against a clinical French side.

Wales rallied in the late stages with tries from Georgia Evans and Gwenllian Pyrs, but the French side’s lead proved to be insurmountable, as they ran out 39-14 winners in Grenoble.

Back in Cardiff, Newbridge RFC completed a well-earned 29-13 victory against Nant Conwy in the WRU Division One Cup final. Pontypool RFC then secured their first cup win since 1983 with a 28-16 win over Ystrad Rhondda, winning the WRU Championship Cup.

A stunning finish from Joe Goodchild helped Cardiff RFC snatch a late 13-10 win against Newport RFC to secure the WRU Premiership Cup.