Wales Sevens star Rhys Jones was in fine form for Cross Keys against Bridgend.
Cross Keys claimed the victory over Bridgend on Saturday afternoon with another below par performance that was still good enough to get the win over tough opposition.
The opening 15 minutes or so were very even with both sides having their fair share of territory and possession. It was the Ravens who opened the scoring with an unconverted try by full back Ross Jones who crossed after some poor attempted tackles from Keys after the defensive line was cut open by the Ravens' sharp backs.
Keys responded just five minutes later when Jones kicked a long range penalty just as it looked as though Keys were finally getting the better of the visitors with the Keys powerful pack causing problems for the Ravens.
Keys were then rewarded with a penalty try after around half an hour of play with Rhys Jones kicking the easiest of conversions to put Keys into the lead for the first time.
Just before the interval Keys lead was extended once more by Rhys Jones as he kicked a huge penalty from the halfway line.
For the last few weeks Keys have started the second half poorly but in this game they actually started the half brightly and Rhys Jones made a lovely break early in the half as Keys made their intentions for the half clear.
After 49 minutes Keys scored an excellent try thanks to a lovely break from scrum half Ryan James who timed his pass to outside half Steffan Jones to perfection and Steffan made a wonderful break to feed wing Nathan Trowbridge who stepped inside the last man to finish well in front of the scoreboard. Rhys Jones converting as Keys looked to turn on the style.
As the second half went on Keys were really beginning to play with more intent but as they looked to build another attack approaching the Ravens 22, a lose pass was intercepted by Ravens outside half James Dixon and he sprinted home to cross under the posts for a try against the run of play which he converted himself.
Keys heads appeared to drop as a result of the interception and Dixon kicked a penalty to bring the Ravens to within a score with just under 10 minutes remaining and with both sides down to 14 men with Keys Danny Hodge and Ravens Scott Hicks in the sin bin after a altercation on the halfway line.
Reuben Tucker and Darren Hughes were outstanding throughout for Keys and have perhaps caused the coaching team more than a few selection headaches as a result of their fine performances.
Cross Keys: Tries: Nathan Trowbridge, Pen Try; Cons: Rhys Jones (2); Pens: Rhys Jones (2) Bridgend Ravens:Tries: Ross Jones , James Dixon; Con: Dixon; Pen: Dixon
Nearly 40 players were involved in the first Wales Under 18 training session of the season. WRU National Performance Manager Gethin Watts is excited at the potential shown by the group and expects the Regional Under 18 Championship to hone their skills even further.