EPCR Challenge Cup – Black Lion Claim First EPCR Challenge Cup Win Against Scarlets


Flyhalf Luka Matkava was key as Black Lion cruised to a 23-07 win over the Scarlets to claim their first EPCR Challenge Cup win.

In a hard-fought first-half, both Black Lion and Scarlets crossed for converted scores with the only difference at the break being a penalty from Matkava.

Scarlets number 8 Vaea Fifita had opened the scoring in just the fourth minute, fly-half Ioan Lloyd converting, but the Welsh region failed to make a one-man advantage pay when Sandro Mamamtavrishvili was sent to the sin-bin.

They came to regret it, with Matkava kicking three points from the tee before full-back Miriani Modebadze went over for the visitors to give them the lead before half-time.

Matkava kicked his second penalty early in the second half as the Georgian side continued to assert their dominance in the set-pieces, and eventually, they picked up their second try with hooker Beka Mamrikashvili powering over- Matkava adding the extras again.

Replacement Harri O'Connor was then sent to the bin, with Black Lion continuing their dominance as Matkava kicked another penalty to secure a famous win for his side in Wales.

Scarlets: Try: Vaea Fifita. Conversion: Ioan Lloyd.
Black Lions: Tries: Miriani Modebadze, Beka Mamrikashvili. Conversions: Luka Matkava (2). Penalties: Luka Matkava (3).

Scarlets: 15 Tom Rogers, 14 Steff Evans, 13 Johnny Williams, 12 Eddie James, 11 Ryan Conbeer, 10 Ioan Lloyd, 9 Gareth Davies, 8 Vaea Fifita, 7 Teddy Leatherbarrow, 6 Ben Williams, 5 Jac Price, 4 Alex Craig, 3 Joe Jones, 2 Shaun Evans, 1 Steff Thomas. Replacements: 16 Eduan Swart, 17 Sam O’Connor, 18 Harri O’Connor, 19 Ed Scragg, 20 Morgan Jones, 21 Archie Hughes, 22 Charlie Titcombe, 23 Ioan Nicholas.
Black Lion: 15 Miriani Modebadze, 14 Akaki Tabutsadze, 13 Tornike Kakhoidze, 12 Merab Sharikadze, 11 Otar Lashkhi, 10 Luka Matkava, 9 Tengiz Peranidze, 8 Luka Ivanishvili, 7 Sandro Mamamtavrishvili, 6 Giorgi Kervalishvili, 5 Grigor Kerdikoshvili, 4 Nodar Cheishvili, 3 Giorgi Chkhartishvili, 2 Beka Mamrikashvili, 1 Dato Abdushelishvili. Replacements: 16 Gela Makharashvili, 17 Aliko Shamilishvili, 18 Bachuki Tchumbadze, 19 Demuri Epremidze, 20 Saba Kurtanidze, 21 Giorgi Margalitadze, 22 Giorgi Jobava, 23 Luka Tsirekidze