Pontarddulais RFC | 1st Team 24 - 27 Aberystwyth RFC | 1st Team

Match Report
03 January 2016 / Team News

Winning start to the New Year

Pontarddulais 24pts  Aberystwyth 27

In any League competition victories away from home are especially welcomed and the light and dark blues of Aberystwyth got 2016 off to the best of starts on Saturday with a win at Parc Coedbach in Pontarddulais. Matches between these two sides have been very close of late, none more so than the narrow 31-27 victory to the home side at Plascrug in September, and a tight entertaining game was always in prospect.

Late withdrawals on the morning of the match forced Aber to reorganise their lineup and call up replacements, the fifteen that ran out onto the heavy, muddy pitch showing new faces upfront and in the threequarters. They got off to a dream start however when, from a lineout 20 metres from the Bont line scrum half Gruff Jones passed out to Myles Hamilton at half back and it was Carwyn Evans in the centre who made the break, feeding wing Adam Carvell to work his magic in reaching the line wide out on the right hand side within two minutes. Smiles on Aberystwyth faces soon turned into concerned frowns however: awarded a penalty from a maul within ten metres of the Aber line, Pontarddulais must have sensed a weakness as they opted for a scrum rather than kick and proceeded to push back the Aber pack with alarming ease. The scrum collapsed and Llangunnor referee Neil Jones immediately awarded the home side a penalty try. Full back Matthew Jones converted to put Pontarddulais 7-5 up after seven minutes. The early worries about the game upfront soon diminished as the Aber eight gelled; it was not Aber’s day for goalkicking however as a chance to regain the lead went awry, but amends were made in the sixteenth minute.  Evans was again prominent in gaining ground on the left hand side of the field, but when he was tackled the threequarters picked up and continued, feeding replacement left wing Ben Lloyd Jones to score Aber’s second try in the very corner, giving his side a 10-7 lead. It was a lead they were to hold for almost the remainder of the half until Pontarddulais were awarded a penalty some 35 metres out in front of the posts. The attempt was low but also hit the upright and Aber struggled to clear the ball from their own 22. Aber were reduced to 14 men when, in their eagerness to clear and thwart Bont an adjudged high tackle earned them a yellow card, and an easy chance for Jones to level the match in the 38th minute. The sides ground out the final couple of minutes and it was all square at 10-10 at the interval.

The rain had temporarily held off for most of the opening session but a heavy vertical shower was timed exquisitely to give the players an open air shower as they rehydrated themselves, and they were thoroughly soaked as the match restarted. The third quarter saw the visitors put their mark on the match, looking the better side as they seemed to gain control. A well built move in the 45th minute put Carvell clear to claim his brace, but his side were dealt a bitter blow six minutes later. An excellent break by centre Paul Bumford In midfield seemed to open a huge gap in the Bont defence, but quick thinking by home centre Josh Goss led to his taking an interception near the halfway line and he beat all chasers to score under the posts. Jones easily converted and the home side were 17-15 ahead against the run of recent play. Just desserts were served within five minutes: a streaking run on the left flank by Carvell was stopped but the home side had some difficulty in clearing from the ensuing lineout. When the kick came it was picked up by Carvell once more who proceeded to dance and break through some defenders before passing to Lloyd Jones who finished off in style. A touchline conversion from Hamilton was to be Aber’s only successful kick of the day, but it gave them a 17-22 lead. Aber continued to put pressure on the home side and that resulted in a yellow card for killing the ball reducing Pontarddulais to 14 men in the 70th minute. From the penalty on the home 22 Aber opted to go for the line; from that lineout it was Aber’s turn to push their opponents back, but that was held up just short of the tryline. A smart pass out to Lloyd Jones however launched the young winger over the line for his hat trick and a ten point advantage for his side. With eight minutes remaining Pontarddulais once again showed their never-say-die spirit and attacked furiously. The Aber forwards stopped a wave of attacks but the defences were finally breached after 77 minutes when the home side’s replacement centre Jacob Miles burst through for a try near the posts. Jones’s conversion closed that gap to just three points and they had that many minutes left to break Aber hearts. Strong defence from the visitors kept play in the vicinity of the halfway line; there was an anxious moment when Aber were somewhat harshly penalised at a tackle, but the visitors competently kept the final home rushes at bay until the final whistle.

It was in the end a very good day for Aberystwyth, their five try haul giving them a bonus point to boot. With League leaders Penclawdd unable to play because of a waterlogged pitch, Aber now find themselves at the top of the table again, albeit having played more games. They themselves miss a match next week because the SWALEC Plate takes priority for would-be opponents Amman United. Aberystwyth return to action on 16th January when they travel to Cardiff to face Clwb Rygbi Cymry Caerdydd in the third round of the Plate competition. 

Players Fixture player info not published.

There doesn't appear to be any tagged photos.

Upload and Tag Photos