Durham XV vs Swansea 1st XV
The 2nd XV, off the back of their league triumph two weeks ago, welcomed Swansea to Durham in the quarter final of the cup, looking to continue their hunt for a historic league-cup double. Myles converted his own try to go 7-0 up after running a sharp line and smart pass from Lloyd, but Swansea quickly showed they weren’t here to mess around and hit back soon after to level the scores. Following a a week of heavy snow, the sun had come out and temperatures rose, producing a perfect day for fast and entertaining rugby. Both sides made full use of this as they both quickly scored their second tries of the day, Lovell crossing over after a change of direction from the influential Akira. Swansea replied with a third try to make it 21-12 to the away side but as half time loomed, Chambre set up Lovell with a lovely inside pass, who raced over to make it 21-19 at HT. The break did little to slow the game down as both teams continued to go blow-for-blow. An interception on halfway for Swansea extended their lead to 28-19 and for a brief moment it looked a dangerous scoreline, but Myles and Akira produced some lovely interplay that ended with Subo crashing over to reduce the deficit to 2 points. This was short lived, however, as Swansea again scored a 7-pointer but their indiscipline cost them, allowing Myles to slow a penalty to make it 35-29 to the Welsh. Injuries to the impressive Lovell and Norman threatened to curb Durham’s momentum but Hutch added impetus and dynamism in the back row and Gleave scored with his first touch, racing through a hole on the inside after Lloyd crashed up the centre, with Myles putting Durham ahead for the first time since his early try. With the game in the balance it was Durham that surged on through the forwards, who showed their fitness to dominate a heavy Swansea pack in the closing stages. Oscar Boe burrowed over after strong carries from all 8 forwards, sealing a victory made tough by a strong Swansea side and some of our own mistakes in defence. Man of the match went to Ethan Harbinson for a dogged display in the back row, negating Swansea’s significantly bigger pack and producing several important turnovers. 43-35 the final score as Durham 2s march on in the cup, surely making themselves one of the favourites to win.