Quins 37 Merthyr 31
The Quins dented the hopes of Merthyr completing a treble of WRU trophies and were in control for most of the match. Merthyr's catch up play failed to deny the Quins a well deserved second victory this season.
The Quins had to make three late changes from the selected side, but such is the spirit in the squad they were able to dominate the set piece and upset the line out to restrict the Ironmen's attempts to play. Reputations meant nothing to this inspired display and the Quins went on the offensive from the whistle.
Steffan Marshall narrowly missed with a 6th minute penalty, but after continued pressing he was on target after 12 minutes. A lapse in concentration by the Quins allowed the Iron men to sneak a try by Owen Howe for Dean Gunter to convert. From the restart however the Quins showed an urgency to attack and Steffan Marshall was on hand to pick up and race 40 metres to cross under the posts. The Quins scrum was well on top and from a blind side pick up, Connor Lloyd found an unmarked Chris Banfield, who made 50 metres to take play deep into the Merthyr 22. Play was kept there for several minutes and Steffan Marshall was able to take advantage of a powerful scrum and put over his second penalty.
The Quins looked the more dangerous and once again their pack demonstrated their ability to take play up to their opponents line and give no option for the referee to award them a penalty try for Marshall to convert. With the interval nearing another Quins error let Nick White in for a Merthyr score which Gunter converted. Again from the restart the Quins combined through Morgan Griffiths, Elis Lloyd , Rhys Williams and Iolo Evans to power upfield and gain another penalty for Steff Marshall to convert giving the Quins a half time lead of 23-14.
Early in the second half Steff Marshall was again on target after another set piece with his 4th penalty. The Quins forwards were well in command and kept most of the play in the Merthyr half for long periods . From this pressure yet another Quins Penalty giving Steffan Marshall the chance to take tally to 24 points.The Iron Men were in some disarray and from a raid near their line the Quins were able to commit most of the opposition into keeping them out , Connor Lloyd spun the ball out left for Morgan Griffiths to round the cover defence and go under the posts for a well taken score, The conversion was charged down.
The Merthyr side managed a raid into the Quins 22 and from a controlled catch and drive play, Louis Jones was able to crash over for Howe to convert.This gave the Merthyr side some impetus and Kyle Evans went over for a try to get them to within three points . This was the time for the Quins to show their metal and they responded to the letter winning and keeping the ball for long periods . Craig Evans who had joined the game put over a penalty to seal a deserved victory and a place in the Final.
The whole team deserve well earned acclaim for a quite magnificent performance after three disappointing League set backs.
The Coaches and supporters can look forward to an interesting end of season run in, and with the return of several injured players ,who knows?
Report by Alan Bowen