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Rugby Union: STORM FORCE VALE; Ebbw Vale 14 Glasgow C 10.

Byline: HUW GRIFFITHS

EBBW VALE showed true grit to claim a vital Welsh-Scottish League victory against Glasgow Caledonians.

Because of the appalling conditions the match was always going to hinge on which side wanted it more.

And that was Mike Ruddock's battlers who fully deserved the points after grinding down their punchless opponents in the mud.

The Steelmen opened the scoring in the 20th minute when fly-half Shaun Connor darted around the fringe of a ruck and popped the ball to hooker Leyton Phillips who crashed over the tryline. Connor converted but the 7-0 lead was very much against the run of play.

Before that the Reds had dominated, spending most of the opening quarter in the home 22.

But like on so many other occasions this season the Scots were unable to convert pressure into points.

But they did cut the deficit nine minutes before half-time when stand-off Tommy Hayes landed an easy penalty.

That was how it remained at half-time but the visitors made a storming start to the second half and got their first try in the 49th minute.

Scottish international centre James McLaren sliced through a gap to touch down and Hayes improved the score.

But Vale refused to throw in the towel and something had to give way and it did when right wing Rhys Shorney darted through a gap to score the host's second try and Jason Strange fired over the conversion.

EBBW VALE: Tries: L Phillips, R Shorney. Cons: S Connor, J Strange.

GLASGOW: Try: J McLaren. Con: T Hayes. Pen: T Hayes.
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Title Annotation:Sport
Publication:The People (London, England)
Date:Feb 11, 2001
Words:260
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