Tonyrefail RFC | 1st Team 22 - 34 Old Penarthians RFC | 1st Team
Jonathan Crimp
2 Conversion
1 Penalty
Liam Union
2 Try
Scott Mccarthy
2 Conversion
1 Penalty
Rhys William Blake
2 Try

Match Report
02 May 2017 / Team News

Old Penarthians RFC v Tonyrefail RFC

Old Penarthians v Tonyrefail Match Report


Saturday 29th April 2017


The Old Penarthians travelled to Tonyrefail RFC in a WRU National League 3 East Central (B) fixture.  It was the second time the teams had met in the month of April as this was a rearranged fixture, the result of an unseasonably frozen pitch earlier in the season.  Having won the fixture earlier in the month, Old Penarthians were able to secure the double over tough opposition running out winners by 34 points to 22. 


Old Penarthians commenced proceedings as they kicked off through outside-half Scott McCarthy.  He was able to cause early confusion in the home team's receivers which resulted in an almost immediate penalty which Jonathan Crimp was able to slot for an early score.  3-0.


From the restart, Tonyrefail were able to regain possession. Some strong carries by their forwards allowed the home side's number ten a kick for territory pinning the Old Boys on their own five for a defensive line out.  A mix up on the calls resulted in a free kick being awarded to Tonyrefail and a quick tap released their pack toward the Penarthian try line. Resolute defence from former Captain Mark Smart allowed Joel de Claire to clamp the ball and the referee award a penalty for the tackled player not releasing the ball. 

A better lineout meant Penarthians sent the ball back into Tonyrefail territory through the occasionally trusty right boot of Gareth Clancy.  A well executed lineout from Rhys Blake hit a flying Josh Alcock.  Quick ball from Clancy to McCarthy allowed a strong run from midfield colossus Rhys Lakin who was able to release a hard charging Crimp.  Some deft footwork from the skipper drew the defence before he passed to Luke Crockett then Liam Union who was able to score the game's opening try.  A Crimp conversion made the score 10-0 in favour of Old Penarthians. 

Tonyrefail's restart went straight to touch and Penarthians elected for a lineout on half way.  A quick throw to Sam Hall secured the ball and Lakin kicked for territory forcing the defender to take the ball into touch.  The next lineout was delivered with precision by Blake to Matthew Sutton.  Clancy fired a pass to McCarthy who popped the ball to de Claire who carried to the 22 before passing to Matthew Stingl.  Stingl was able to recover from his initial surprise at being in so much space to recycle the ball just short of the try line. Good ruck work from Penarthians allowed a pass from Clancy to McCarthy to a well-placed Blake for his customary try. Crimp again added the extras to take the lead out to 17-0.

The home team were the next to score with Blake called for offside the Tonyrefail outside half kicked for a five metre lineout. Despite the best efforts of the Old Boys defence they were unable to slow a driving maul and duly conceded a try.  With the conversion missed the score favoured Penarthians 17-5. 


The next ten-minutes were easily forgotten with both sides playing error strewn rugby with neither retaining possession for any length of time.  This was exemplified when Clancy kicked again and both Tonyrefail winger and fullback allowed the ball to bounce over them, further exasperated when one knocked the ball backwards allowing Old Pens' winger James Williams to gather inside the opposition 22.  With Williams carrying to the Tonyrefail 5 metre line it looked as though his pass to Clancy would result in a try but desperate defence was to deny him. Unfortunately Penarthians lost their captain at this stage as Crimp had taken a blow to the head resulting in a sizeable swelling and team physiotherapist John Slack deeming it unsafe for him to continue.  George Kynaston replaced Crimp meaning Rowan Alcock moved from wing to fullback. 


Kynaston didn't wait long to contribute with a deft run and chip kick bouncing awkwardly, forcing the Tonyrefail cover to take the ball into touch. Another good lineout released the Old Penarthian backs with Rowan Alcock joining the line to good effect and culminating with a Union try in the corner.  McCarthy added the conversion for a 24-5 lead at half time. 


Despite several players now struggling with bumps, perhaps a consequence of the rock hard pitch, Penarthians slowed the pace and with another penalty McCarthy kicked to touch. Blake, not to be outdone by try rival Union timed his throw to perfection and was at the back of the driving maul to touch down for his second try of the game.  Any easy conversion for McCarthy made the score 31-5 to Old Penarthians. 


The game's first yellow card would go to Rowan Alcock despite the hosts being the more heavily penalised of the sides.  Despite the disadvantage of having a player in the sin bin the Penarthian defence held strongly and was able to force a turnover.  Sadly a wayward lineout gifted Tonyrefail the easiest of trys in the corner.  A missed conversion made the score 31-10. 


The home team's second try appeared to give them confidence and a period of domination in the scrum gave them territory and several penalties.  Tonyrefail's third try ppeared to come from a dubious penalty with de Claire having stolen the ball from a tackled player with no ruck formed yet the man in charge deciding he had handled the ball in a ruck. Some slick passing led to a try and conversion. Score 31-17.  

In previous games this season the team has let games slip away when the opposition regrouped but in this instance the players were determined to finish the game with a win.  Owen Rees, on permit from Penarth replaced James Williams on the wing and was keen to get involved. 


Excellent breakdown work from replacement back row Matthew Craft, tackling from Stingl and link play from Josh Alcock continually pressurised the home team.  This led to several penalties and the referee finally punished Tonyrefail with their number 6 issued with a yellow card.  A penalty awarded at the same time allowed McCarthy to slot the three points and take the score to 34-17 in favour of Old Penarthians. 


Frustration on the part of Tonyrefail led to further indiscipline as the home players turned their attention on the referee rather than the attacking Penarthians.  A further yellow card was issued for abuse of the match official and shortly after a straight red card with behaviour descending to levels unacceptable on a rugby pitch. 


With time expiring the Old Penarthians should have run the clock out but instead they decided to try their hand against a depleted Tonyrefail defence.  Whilst this would have been commendable had they scored Lakin and de Claire conspired to a display of which the Chuckle Brother's would have been proud, tripping over each other and fumbling the ball.  This allowed the Tonyrefail outside centre to gather the ball and sprint the length of the field for a consolation bonus point try despite the attentions of a gasping Union.  With a missed conversion the full time score was 34-22.


Another game in which the 1st XV showed glimpses of the rugby which many know they are capable of but throughout the season has been interspersed with unforced errors.  A bonus point win has consolidated Penarthians place in the league and it is hoped renewed commitment and player recruitment will improve things next season.


Next weekend the 1st team make the short journey across Cardiff to play Cardiff Saracens at Roath Recreation Ground in a rearranged fixture in what will also be the last game of the season.  The 2nd XV are also away to Taffs Well.  Both games kick off at 2.30pm.


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