Rugby Union / Round-Up: Trying time at the last

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The Independent Online
A TRY from the Bridgend full- back Chris Bradshaw clinched a tight 19-17 victory over Abertillery yesterday, but failed to keep Bridgend's place at the head of the Heineken League. It was a miserable result for Abertillery, who have five defeats from five matches, but their resilience in limiting Bridgend to the single try helped Cardiff to go top due to a higher try-count.

Another impressive performance in defeat came from newcomers Treorchy, who reaffirmed their credentials to be in the top flight despite losing 13- 12 at Pontypool. Treorchy hit back magnificently after trailing 3-13, with three penalties coming from stand-off David Evans. Neath moved into third place with a hard-fought 10-8 win at Newbridge, Swansea comfortably won their derby game at Dunvant 20-12 where stand-off Aled Williams kicked five penalties.

Match of the day in the Courage Clubs' Championship League Two was at Bramley Road where Waterloo lost their 100 per cent record to Saracens who leap-frog Waterloo to the top of the division after a 27-5 win. Six clubs are behind them with two wins from four matches, the best of them yesterday being Newcastle Gosforth who ran in five tries for their 37-10 victory over Moseley.

Italy beat Romania 24-6 in a World Cup European play-off match in Sicily yesterday to push the Romanians into what will probably be the toughest group at the finals next year, with South Africa, defending champions Australia and Canada. The winner of Italy's match with Wales in Cardiff on 12 October will line up with New Zealand, Ireland and the Asian qualifier, while the losers join a tight pool containing England, Western Samoa and Argentina.

In South Africa yesterday, Transvaal retained the Currie Cup by beating Free State 56-33 in an exhilarating final. In New Zealand, Canterbury retained the Ranfurly Shield after a last- minute kick ensured defeat of Otago by 22-20.