DUNDEE High director of rugby Ian Rankin was clearly disappointed to lose out to Swansea in the club’s sixth and final match of its British & Irish Cup campaign, but proud of his side’s ability to compete with the professional sides in Pool 3.
Scorers: Dundee: Try: McIver. Swansea: Try: Otten. Pens: Thomas 2
“We have fronted up well, and really should have won, especially as Swansea were down to 14 men for nearly all the second half. They were just that bit smarter, playing the cold freezing conditions better than us with a tight controlled game, as opposed to our long 15 metre passes,” said the frustrated Rankin who will now turn his mind to beating the drop in the Premiership.
Despite having most of the game, including playing with a blizzard at its back in the second half, High failed to take the chances on offer, mainly created by the immense efforts of Richie McIver. The No 8 was in the thick of all things good, fittingly scoring his side’s only points in the 30th minute when he started a move outside the Swans’ 22 before getting on the end of an inspired passage of play from the home pack.
The visitors had taken the lead in three minutes when full-back Nicky J Thomas kicked a penalty, before McIver’s touchdown which Jack Steele failed to convert. The usually reliable centre also missed two straightforward penalties. The Welsh side took full advantage, ending the half with a flurry, resulting in Thomas kicking his second penalty and hooker Scott Owen barging over for an unconverted try.
Dundee ran the second half, but thanks to great organisation by the visitors, for whom centre Chris Shelmerdine was outstanding after flanker Mathew Davies had been red-carded for a wild punch in 42 minutes, were unable to snatch the win its pressure merited.
Dundee HSFP: PM Penn; A McLean, J Houston, J Steele, J Johnstone; B Laursen, A Dymock; S Longwell, D Russell, A Brown, A Redmayne, R Hawkins, D Levison(c), I Wilson, R McIver. Subs used: K Byrce, N Dymock, G Robertson, A Linton, C Cumming, J Urquhart, C Bowie
Swansea: NJ Thomas; N Harwood, A Jenkins, C Shelmerdine, R Williams; D Watts, J Cole; M Norman, S Otten, N Thomas(c), B Fox, R Hughes, J McKenna, M Davies, D Baker. Subs used: I Williams, N Smith, S Kiley, J Preddy, C Clement, P John, R Dudley-Jones.
Referee: N Correll (RFU)