07 November 2021 / Club News

Youthh Making Progress

Aberystwyth RFC Youth 5 – v – 24 Narberth RFC Youth

Aber had lost to the visitors by 26 pts to 3 when these two sides met at Narberth in early October but a 24 – 20 win at home against Whitland Youth since then had raised the confidence of the team. However, against bigger, stronger opponents currently riding high in their league, Aber’s brave effort on Saturday failed to earn them another victory even though there was no disgrace in this defeat.

Despite the wet windy conditions the hosts started this game strongly, doing well in the scrums and lineouts against their taller and heavier opponents. They were camped on Narberth’s try line for a long period as drive after drive was held back by the visitors’ strong defence until eventually hooker Llyr Davies went over for the opening try of the match. The conversion was just wide of the left upright so the score after the opening ten minutes was 5 – 0.

After that Narberth settled down and gained ground. When the ball came to their left wing he accelerated from the 22 metre line to score their first try. The conversion failed but they were level at 5 – 5. It was clear that the visitors had the greater confidence and moved the ball along their back line smoothly at every opportunity.

Reduced to fourteen players Narberth still played with confidence and despite Aber’s tireless tackling the visitors were able to move the ball swiftly away from the home side’s cover and it was entirely with the run of play that the visitors’ second try again came on their left wing followed by an excellent conversion that put them ahead by 12 – 5 at half-time.

Narberth started the second half strongly and were camped for a long time close to Aber’s try line. The home side’s defence held out very well against strong, determined attacks, but it eventually yielded as the visitors scored their third try. This went unconverted but they had increased their lead to 5 – 17.

Towards the end of the match Aber threw everything into determined attacks and it was against the run of play that an interception and long run downfield gifted Narberth with their fourth try. A simple conversion closed the scoring at 5 – 24 giving an unbalanced picture of how close the game really had been.

More experience of playing together will bring confidence and fluidity to Aber’s squad. Encouraging performances in this game from flanker Rhodri Jones, Owen Jones, No 8 Shane Evans, fullback Euros Lloyd as well as hooker Llyr Davies, with unflagging effort from the rest of the team, showed that they should be a very efficient and competitive squad by the beginning of next season. Every game between now and then will be a key part of their learning curve.     

It was very evident that the visitors had brought many more supporters to Plascrug than Aber could muster. There were very few, if any, members of the club’s senior squad present to encourage their Youth XV. Perhaps they have forgotten that they once benefited from strong vocal support when they were younger players.

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