swansea 13

glasgow 21

LEVEL-HEADED Glasgow skipper Andy Nicol and coach Richie Dixon resisted the temptation to display anything more than muted satisfaction in the wake of his side's clinical and deserved success against the Welsh-Scottish League cham-pions on their own midden.

Instead, they warned their players to keep their mind on the job in terms of securing a place in the knock-out rounds of the Celtic League by keeping up the momentum against Ebbw Vale and Llanelli at Hughenden this week.

''It was a magnificent result at St Helens and the performance featured enterprise, commitment and skill,'' declared Nicol. ''I had said to the guys that the victory over Ponty the previous weekend would count for nothing if we lost to Swansea, and they took that on board. The same applies now because Swansea will be quickly forgotten if we get careless and slip up against Ebbw Vale.''

Nicol went on: ''One of the most pleasing aspects was the fact that so many of the training moves came off. Tommy Hayes produced a masterful display of tactical kicking - but it was the pack that won it.

''They just ground Swansea into submission and provided Tommy with a constant supply of great ball. There is a feeling that something big is happening here and there is a resolve and determination to see it through.''

Coach Richie Dixon was equally cautious as he stated: ''The result is merely encouraging. It was a good win, we deserved it and everyone can take great heart.''

Having swapped early penalties with Gavin Henson, Hayes was clearly in the mood to make an impression and he was the prime performer in the opening touchdown for the visitors.

The Cook Islander did the initial damage with a speedy surge through half a gap in midfield. Centre James McLaren expertly sucked in a group of markers - which created the time and space for Hayes to latch onto the inside pass and cruise to the line.

He was out of luck with the conversion, but continued to be a dominating presence as he dictated the shape of the match.

His accurate diagonal kicks were keeping the Swansea defence pinned back in their own 22-zone and the only surprise was that Glasgow were unable to turn pressure into additional points before the break.

Australian prop Cameron Blades was held up a couple of paces short of the line before Gordon Bulloch was also thwarted. Then young centre Andy Henderson was quickly out of the traps to chase another teasing Hayes chip - but he was beaten to the vital touch by a split second by home full-back Kevin Morgan.

Glasgow maintained the momentum after the restart and took only three minutes to increase their lead. Hayes found touch close to the line with a penalty and Jon Petrie was driven over without much resistance. Hayes followed up to land the conversion from the widest possible angle.

The All Whites clawed their way back into contention when Henson clipped over his second penalty after substitute wing Jon Stuart was guilty of a high tackle on Shaun Payne.

But Glasgow were still in total control - and Hayes capped a marvellous all-round display by ensuring the success with a late penalty and drop-goal.

Jenkins rumbled over for the consolation try for Swansea and Henson's conversion was the last act of the match.

Glasgow officials yesterday played down injury fears surrounding winger Roly Reid. He was taken off looking dazed during the first half, but spokesman Bill McMurtrie said: ''Roly was not concussed. He took a blow on the neck and there is no serious problem.''

Had the player been concussed, he would have been forced to remain on the sidelines for a statutory three-week period, which would have ruled him out of the start of Glasgow's Heineken Cup campaign.

Swansea K Morgan; R Rees, S Payne, S Gibbs , P Mackey (M Robinson,75); G Henson, R Jones (S Martens, 22); A Le Chevalier, C Wells ( G Jenkins, 62), B Evans ( J Masters, 55), L Jones, A Moore (J Griffiths, 44) J Bater (C Charvis, 44), H Jenkins, D Thomas

Glasgow G Kiddie; R Kerr, J McLaren, A Henderson, R Reid (J Stuart, 32); T Hayes, A Nicol; C Blades, G Bulloch, L Harrison, N Ross, J White, G Simpson, D Macfadyen, J Petrie

Referee D Courtney (IRFU).

Score sequence (Swansea first) 3-0, 3-3, 3-8 (half time) 3-15, 6-15, 6-18, 6-21, 13-21

Scorers. Swansea. Try Jenkins (80) Con Henson (80) Pens Henson (7, 66) Glasgow. Tries (Hayes 28), Petrie (43) Cons Hayes (43) Pens Hayes (10, 78)

Drop goal Hayes (79)