The Drovers went down to their first defeat since the start of Phase Two of the Premiership when they lost a very tight game at Bedwas writes Tom Hughes.
After home wins over Aberavon and Cardiff, they could not quite lift their game at a venue that has brought them limited success in the past.
With the wind in their favour, they had a lot of chances to get a try in the opening quarter, close range scrums and line outs all but bringing a score in the face of some desperate Bedwas defence.
In the closest of battles, the Drovers led 6-3 early in the second half – two penalties from fly half Kristian Jones trumping one by opposite number Steffan Jones.
Dangerous scrum half Lee Rees was just beaten to the touchdown of his own kick in the Bedwas in goal area to put the Drovers further ahead but against the run of play, Bedwas charged down a relieving kick to allow lock Geraint Edmunds to score.
Wing Matthew John then showed good pace to exploit some suspect marking out wide and put Bedwas 13-6 up in the 62nd minute.
With a share of possession in the final quarter, Llandovery strove hard for the converted try that might draw them level and a close range line out and scrum all but brought the elusive score near the end.
The Drovers had to be content with a losing bonus point and they remain in ninth position in the 16 strong lead but have two, even three games in hand because of bad weather postponements.
Team Manager Andrew Jones thought the long lay-off had not helped the side adopt their usual free flowing play.
“Because of the bad weather, we have had four games postponed over the last five weeks – three in the league against RGC, Bargoed and Cross Keys - and one in the Welsh Cup at Cross Keys.”
“We last played three weeks ago and the rustiness may have explained the unusual basic errors we were prone to make.”
“It was also disappointing to give away so many penalties in promising positions and we will need to tighten up that area of the game”
“The tacky Bridge Field pitch did not suit our fluent game but we are pleased with the defence which was severely tested but did at least get us a losing bonus point”
“Our forwards worked their socks off in the far from ideal conditions and skipper Richard Brooks at No 8, locks Bryn Griffiths and Jack Jones along with prop Scott Jenkins put in big shifts.”
“The backs fizzled in and out of the game but wing Aaron Warren looked very dangerous whenever he had the ball.”
This Saturday they entertain the Steelmen from Ebbw Vale - 22-6 winners over Neath at the week-end - in an early kick off game (1 00pm).
***The rearranged Welsh Cup quarter final against Cross Keys will now take place at Pandy Park on Wednesday March 21 (KO 7:30 pm)