Controversial Jones kick makes it all square at Liberty Stadium

Ospreys 9 Scarlets 9

Ospreys 9 Scarlets 9

Fly-half Stephen Jones kicked a late penalty to give the Scarlets a share of the spoils of a stop-start RaboDirect PRO12 League derby with Ospreys at the Liberty Stadium.

The match-tying kick was a controversial one, with Jones arguably lucky to be on the field after receiving a yellow rather than a red card for a tip tackle on Tommy Bowe in the first half.

Like Jones, Dan Biggar kicked three penalties for the Ospreys.

Wales lock Alun Wyn Jones returned from a rest after the World Cup to lead the Ospreys, but fellow Wales team-mates Huw Bennett, Ryan Bevington, Ryan Jones and Shane Williams were on the bench.

The Scarlets included Wales trio Scott Williams, Stephen Jones and Tavis Knoyle in the starting line-up, while George North, Jon Davies and Ken Owens were on the bench.

The Ospreys just about edged an incident-backed first period, which they led 3-0.

The biggest talking point was Jones’ tip tackle on Bowe which only warranted a yellow card from French referee Mathieu Raynel. The challenge looked worse than the tip tackle by Sam Warburton on Vincent Clerc which earned the Wales captain a red card in the World Cup semi-final against France.

Before he went to the sin-bin, Jones and opposite number Dan Biggar missed penalty goal attempts in the first quarter, as did Scarlets full-back Evans.

Jones’ indiscretion resulted in the deadlock being broken as Biggar kicked the Ospreys into a 3-0 lead on 24 minutes.

Despite the Ospreys also being reduced to 14 men – flanker Justin Tipuric seeing yellow for a ruck offence – the home side finished the half the stronger with Alun Wyn Jones crossing the line but failing to ground the ball. That was the only hint of a try in the entire 80 minutes.

It took just two minutes of the second half for the Scarlets to get back on level terms through a Jones penalty after the Ospreys were penalised at a scrum.

But the scores were level for just four minutes as Biggar kicked penalties on 46 and 48 minutes to put the Ospreys 9-6 in front. That prompted the Scarlets to introduce two more Wales World Cup stars in Davies and North.

The Scarlets did not help themselves as Jones and Evans missed a penalty apiece as the Ospreys brought on Shane Williams and Ryan Jones.

Biggar missed a penalty on 68 minutes and that proved costly as Jones kicked a 78th-minute penalty to draw the scores level.

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