Scarlets kick off Pro 12 with Aironi win

Scarlets kicked off their Pro12 League campaign with a 32-9 victory over Italian team Aironi at Parc y Scarlets.

It was almost a damp squib in every sense at Parc Y Scarlets on Sunday. With
constant rainfall making for a slippy ball and a slight slapstick element to
the rugby on show, both players and crowd alike had a frustrating first half.

With scrums slipping and any threats extinguished by the difficulties in passing,
only the boots of Dan Newton and Naas Olivier caused any changes in the scoreboard
in the first half which ended on a tight 9 -6.

The locals, more used to the West Wales climate came out for the second half
having regrouped and readjusted to dominate the Italian side, who after a display
that showed great promise and physicality to begin with, were visibly struggling.

With the visitors’ set-pieces consistently crumbling, ref Andrew McMenemy
had his work cut out for him as Aironi struggled with the wheel and the rapidly
strengthening attack of the Scarlets.

An equalising penalty from Naas Olivier early into the second half was the
last points Aironi put on the board as once the clock clicked past 50 minutes
the hosts smashed down their barriers.

Rhys Thomas was the first to go over the line and marked the start of the
full scale Scarlet domination and from then on any possession for Aironi was
short lived and quickly stolen back and Andy Fenby followed Thomas over the
whitewash after a swarm defence from Aironi was broken.

From there on in it was clear that some of the fight had gone from Aironi,
and after one final penalty for Rhys Jones, the hosts finished with an impressive
32-9 lead.

Final Score Scarlets 32 Aironi 9


Tries: R Thomas, Fenby
Cons: Newton 2
Pens: Newton 5, R Jones

Pens: Olivier 3

Att: 6,493

Ref: Andrew McMenemy (RFU)


Scarlets: Evans; L Williams, Gomer-Davies, A Thomas, Fenby; Newton, R Williams; I Thomas (capt), Phillips, R Thomas, Shingler, Day, McCusker, Turnbull, Morgan.

Replacements: Warren, R Jones , G Davies , John , Myhill , Gardner , Reed, Pugh .

Aironi: Trevisan; R Pavan, Quartaroli, Pizarro, Venditti; Olivier, Tebaldi; Aguero, Santamaria (capt), Redolfini, Furno, Biagi, Sole, Cattina, Williams.

Replacements: Benetti, Bronzini , A De Marchi , Staibano , Ferrarini , Viljoen, Giazzon, G Pavan.

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