Late Sam Jones try gives RGC historic WRU National Cup final berth
Sunday 26 March 2017 11:20
RGC reached the WRU National Cup final for the first time in their history after a dramatic 24-20 win over Merthyr.
The Gogs pulled off a last-gasp triumph thanks to a last gasp try from winger Sam Jones, and they will now head to the Principality Stadium on April 16 where they will take on Pontypridd.
Mark Jones’ side have enjoyed another memorable campaign and once again demonstration enormous character to book their final berth, and they will look to keep their positive momentum going when they host Ebbw Vale on April 8.
New Zealand fly-half Jacob Botica got RGC off to a flyer in-front of the S4C cameras with a superb penalty from the halfway line, but Mathew Jarvis levelled matters soon after with a free-kick of his after an improved spell from the Ironmen.
The first try of the contest arrived when a superb run from Afon Bagshaw set up Carwyn ap Myrddin to touch down on his 100th appearance for the Gogs. Botica added the extras.
Things got even better shortly before the break when Botica produced a sensational piece of individual skill to burst clear and cross the white wash.
After the break saw Merthyr turn the tables and they struck back almost immediately when James Howe scored, with Jarvis firing over the conversion.
Botica missed two penalties in quick succession, and RGC were made to pay for this on 76 minutes when Martyn Thomas finished off a fine team move to dart over the line, and Jarvis added the extras to give them a three-point cushion.
The Gogs continued to fight until the death and it was left to Jones – who is a product of the Rydal Penrhos Rugby Academy run in association with the club – to inject some pace at a crucial stage to score a stoppage time try to send RGC to the final.