Saints welcome Wales rugby legend for charity match

By County Echo Reporter in Rugby

ST Davids welcomed a Wales rugby hero to their midst as they opened their season with a charity match against Man-Up UK, a team organised in part by TV presenter Sean Holley.

A thrilling contest resulted in the Saints being outscored by 10 tries to three as Man-Up secured a 54-15 victory.

But the focus was on Graham Price. The legendary Welsh prop, renowned for an international debut in which he scored a 75-yard try against France before going on to make 41 appearances for Wales, offered up a signed shirt for auction and spent over an hour regaling tales from the past to an eager audience.

Proceeds from the evening were donated to the Pembrokeshire Friends of Prostate Cymru, whose secretary, John Daniels and chairman, Brian Harries, were on hand to auction a number of lots in aid of the charity.

Price was then joined by former Ospreys coach Holley and ex-Welsh international full back Geraint Bowen for a question and answer session in the clubhouse.

The rugby men were also joined by Ian Walsh, the former Swansea City and Cardiff City footballer who scored seven times for Wales in 18 appearances, who provided a different perspective to that of the rugby crowd.

Commenting on the packed day, St Davids captain Rhys Price said: “We enjoyed the rugby, but to have such a notable panel to entertain us afterwards was brilliant.

“We would like to thank them, the players and supporters for staying behind after the match.”

Earlier in the day, free-flowing rugby was on the cards as both sides looked to put on a show for a good cause.

The strong-running backs from Man-Up raced into an early 10-point lead thanks to unconverted tries by talented centres Scott James and Scott Candler.

Soon after, the Saints went close in the bottom corner via Noel Lyons, Fraser Watson and skipper Price, but the opposition broke out from their own line for Mauritz Neumann to score under the posts. Dylan Davies added the extra points with a drop-kicked conversion.

Luke Brooks, Eirian Harries, Dan Murphy and Gethin Bateman helped put St Davids on the attack once more, but again the ball was turned over by Man-Up.

Following good work from Luke Freebury and Harvey Godkin, the visitors were able to launch a counter-attack which led to Neumann once again dotting down to give his side a 22-0 advantage at the break.

St Davids got the tries they so greatly deserved after the break.

Despite playing into a strong wind for the majority of the second period, the Saints ate into Man-Up’s lead thanks to tries from Luke Brooks, Chris Jenkins and Rhys Evans.

But it was Man-Up who continued to hold the edge as Neumann powered over for his hat-trick.

And he was soon joined on the list of try-scorers by Sean Morgan, Candler for the second time, Dylan Thomas, Mike Jenkins and Mike Ryan.

With entertainment the theme of the day, an excellent match featuring 13 tries provided just that for the large, appreciative crowd.

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