Moon the action hero

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The Independent Online
Llanelli 23 Pontypridd 13

Just when you thought Welsh rugby had seen a total eclipse of the Moon, up pops Rupert with one of those all-action performances which drove Llanelli to so many honours under his captaincy and himself to 13 Welsh caps.

He might not have been able to inspire the Scarlets in the Swalec Cup semi-final last week but in Saturday's rematch he shone brilliantly behind a rampant pack.

The Llanelli coach, Gareth Jenkins, decided to change the tactics for Saturday's vital return match and make Moon the fulcrum of his game plan. The physical presence of Craig Quinnell added extra vigour and victory kept alive the Scarlets' slim hopes of winning the First Division.

Defeat for Pontypridd knocked a huge dent in their chances of notching a league and cup double and they would now be best served by concentrating on beating Neath in the cup final.

It was as fiercely competitive and intense as the semi-final, although this time Llanelli were able to deny the Pontypridd line-out and tie down their back row.

Even though the Llanelli skipper, Phil Davies, who scored one of their three tries, believes Cardiff are ahead in the race for the title, he knows that his side are bound to have a big say in its final destination.

With games against the two top teams to come - Neath away on Friday and Cardiff on 14 May - they could conceivably cause an upset and bridge the three points gap. Pontypridd also meet Cardiff and Neath in their run- in.

Llanelli: Tries Wintle, Davies, Proctor; Conversion McCarthy; Penalties McCarthy 2. Pontypridd: Try John; Conversion Jenkins; Penalties Jenkins 2.

Llanelli: J Thomas; W Proctor, N Boobyer, M Wintle, G Evans; M McCarthy, R Moon; R Evans, R McBryde, H Williams-Jones,P Davies (capt), L Williams, C Wyatt, J Williams, C Quinnell.

Pontypridd: C Cormack; G Jones, J Lewis, S McIntosh (S Enoch, h-t), G Lewis; N Jenkins, P John; N Bezani (capt), J Evans, N Eynon (M Spiller, 20-25), G Prosser, P Owen, M Lloyd, D McIntosh, R Collins.

Referee: H Lewis (Bridgend).