2019 Motorplus Autumn Series
23 November 2019 • KO 14:30
34 v 18
Morganstone Brewery Field, Bridgend
Referee : James Jones
Wales Dragonhearts overcame Malta Knights in a very competitive match in Bridgend, scoring two late tries to win 34-18.
It was the final game in the 25th anniversary Motorplus Autumn Series for the Dragonhearts, and despite the influence of Malta’s Super League star Jarrad Sammut, and two professionals from Australia’s NSW Cup, the match was evenly balanced until Wales pulled away in the final five minutes.
Both sides were close in the opening exchanges. Sean Franz’s grubber was close to creating a Maltese try, whilst Adam Watton nearly crossed for Wales, but good defending saw him pushed into touch.
The visitors took the lead on nine minutes when skipper Mark Camilleri stormed over on the right flank. Jarrod Sammut converted.
Wales levelled straight away. Adam Watton scored in the corner. Mike Hurley converted.
Then from kick-off they took the lead. Sam Pridgeon went over in the opposite corner for an unconverted try.
Some Super League magic got Malta back into the game. Wigan's Sammut got the ball from dummy half and twisted his way over the line, converting his own try to put his side 12-10 up.
They weren’t in the lead for long. Mike Hurley scored under the sticks and converted his own try, putting Wales 16-12 up at the break.
NSW Cup player Tyler Cassel got Malta level within two minutes of the second half, scoring under the posts and Sammut converting.
But Wales hit back within a few minutes, this time through a Grant Harrington try that Hurley converted.
A tough midfield slog followed, and this was nearly broken by a stunning run from Jonah Huntley, kicking the ball upfield three times, but knocked on as he finally dived on it to attempt to claim a tackle.
Huntley’s second charge, this time with the ball in his hands, again nearly led to a try. It was a good set of six, but on the final tackle, Dean Higgs was held up over the line.
Malta nearly got themselves a levelling try with ten minutes remaining, but Aiden Demicoli’s flick onto Camilleri was forward.
But Wales sealed it with a Jarad Hinnem try on 35 minutes that Hurley improved.
The game ended on a sour note for Malta when Tyler Cassel was sinbinned and Wales took advantage straight away with Hurley diving over and converting.
Team Lists and Scoring Information
|3||Liam Watton (c)|
|1||Mark Camilleri (c)||1||4|
|9||0 - 4||Mark Camilleri||Malta||Try|
|10||0 - 6||Jarrod Sammut||Malta||Conversion|
|13||4 - 6||Adam Watton||Welsh League||Try|
|14||6 - 6||Mike Hurley||Welsh League||Conversion|
|17||10 - 6||Sam Pridgeon||Welsh League||Try|
|19||10 - 6||Mike Hurley||Welsh League||Missed Conversion|
|23||10 - 10||Jarrod Sammut||Malta||Try|
|24||10 - 12||Jarrod Sammut||Malta||Conversion|
|26||14 - 12||Mike Hurley||Welsh League||Try|
|27||16 - 12||Mike Hurley||Welsh League||Conversion|
|42||16 - 16||Tyler Cassel||Malta||Try|
|43||16 - 18||Jarrod Sammut||Malta||Conversion|
|49||20 - 18||Grant Harrington||Welsh League||Try|
|50||22 - 18||Mike Hurley||Welsh League||Conversion|
|60||22 - 18||Tom Matthews||Welsh League||Yellow Card|
|60||22 - 18||Alfie Jewitt||Malta||Yellow Card|
|75||26 - 18||Jarad Hinnem||Welsh League||Try|
|76||28 - 18||Mike Hurley||Welsh League||Conversion|
|77||32 - 18||Mike Hurley||Welsh League||Try|
|77||32 - 18||Tyler Cassel||Malta||Yellow Card|
|78||34 - 18||Byron Edwards||Welsh League||Conversion|