Wales Rugby Leagues biggest ever weekend kicked off in a deluge at Blackwood but the level of skill shown in both junior finals proves that the future of rugby league in Wales is in safes.
First up was the u15s grand final where the Cardiff Demons edged the NPT Steelers 16-14 in a seesaw game that would only be decided in the last minute.
The first ten minutes saw the two teams grinding out their sets in the appalling conditions. The deadlock was broken by the Demons when a high kick on the last tackle was tapped back and some quick hands got the ball out wide for captain Louis Denton to touch down in the corner.
At the twenty minute mark the Steelers piled on the pressure and limited the Demons to a thirty metre gain as they tried to bring the ball out of their own half. The Steelers came close on the first attempt and on the back of a penalty pushed the ball out wide for Tom Owen to touch down. The conversion from skipper Greg Rodgers gave the Steelers a 6-4 lead heading into the break.
Straight from the kick off the Steelers worked their way up the field and some great running up the middle from Evan Yardley set them up for a quick pass to Keiron Mattocks to extend the Steelers lead to six.
Six minutes later the Steelers gave away a series of penalties and found themselves defending their own line. The Demons took full advantage with Denton picking up his second of the game reducing the deficit to two.
The Steelers responded in style with a couple of half breaks putting them in great position for the high kick on the last by Courtney Davies. The ball was plucked out of the air by and touched down by Tom Evans to re establish the six point advantage.
Five minutes later some hard yards by the Demons forwards put them in great position on the Steelers twenty metre line. Once again quick Demons hands in very wet conditions pushed the ball out wide and full back Tom Mace scored to reduce the gap to two points with five minutes left on the clock.
In the dying stages of the game the Steelers seemed to be in complete control camping out in the opponents half. Demons Ryan Matson picked up the ball on the kick return and made a great break, shrugging off a number of tackles to set up Jordan Purcell who slid across the line to score. The conversion was missed but the clock ran out and the Demons were champions with a score of 16-14.
Demons Coach Jason Coleman said “The lads have put in a huge amount of work this season and today just makes it all worth while”.