Canton RFC | 1st Team 25 - 12 Old Penarthians RFC | 1st Team
Rhys Lakin
1 Try
Jonathan Crimp
1 Conversion
Suliman Khan
1 Try

Match Report
04 January 2018 / Team News

Old Penarthians v Canton Match Report

The last match for Old Penarthians in 2017 saw them travel the short distance to Lawrenny Avenue in Cardiff to play Canton on their 4G all-weather playing surface.  The match was seen as a ‘must win’ game for the Old Pens with Canton only one place above them in the basement battle of Division 3 East Central (B).  Unfortunately, the 25 points to 12 points victory in favour of Canton leaves Penarthians in 11th place in the league, having played half of the allotted fixtures.

For the most part the strong wind and hard, bruising surface were major contributory factors in the result but so were the inadequacies of the set piece which again failed to provide the threequarters with sufficient ball for them to show their abilities.

Coaches Simon Hurley and Anthony Davies will be looking for a strong second half of the season, but it will rely on the players showing their commitment to the training sessions as well as the matches.

Commitment in the initial stages of the match with Canton was however strongly evident with Tom Rogers, Luke Crockett and debutant James Roach all carrying the ball into contact to good effect.  The other supporting forwards were on hand to ensure that momentum was maintained, and territory gained.

A loss of concentration was however punished with a long kick upfield carried by the wind to send Old Pens back into their twenty-two.  A defensive clearance found touch, but it still gave Canton an attacking lineout on the right-hand side of the pitch.  The ball was won cleanly and with a threequarter move straight from a training session a gap was created wide out and the Canton full back accepted the opportunity to score an unconverted try on the left-hand side of the pitch.

A good kick-off from David Lakin saw a challenge in the air from Chad Wilson and Crockett and the ball was taken on by Tom Sidford.  Lakin was on hand to pass to Jon Crimp and a clever grubber kick forward sent the team into the opposition twenty-two.  The pressure could not be maintained however and more kicks on the wind sent Old Pens backwards.  For the most part half Fearghas Gough at fullback dealt with the difficult conditions well and often set up counterattacks

On 24 minutes however one long Canton kick found a touch 15m from the tryline. A long throw was knocked on and a scrum to Canton was awarded.  With a dominant scrum, the result was something of a formality with a push over try to the number eight resulting from a second reset scrum.  With a successful conversion the score was 12 – 0.

From another good kick off by Lakin, Canton were under pressure and the outside half had his clearance kick charged down by Sol Khan.  Khan was able to collect the bouncing ball to score his first try for the club on debut. The conversion was unsuccessful.

This stirred the visitors and on two occasions Josh Allcock broke through the defence.  On the first occasion a pass went behind the supporting Lakin and on the other Wilson was bundled into touch.

Then with the last play of the first half the good work was undone and Canton scored again through a well manged threequarter move.  With the conversion good the half time score was 17 – 5

The second half could not have started better for the visitors with Canton again under pressure and conceding a penalty at the ruck after excellent work from Peter Bennett and Geraint Blake.  Lakin, not for the first time, took a quick penalty and was obstructed, resulting in a yellow card to the perpetrator.  A kick to the corner led to a lineout and a driving maul which was adjudged to have been held up over the line.

The resulting scrum was however secured and a break from the base by Blake saw him pass to Rhys Lakin who crashed over to score.  Crimp converted and after three minutes the score was 17 – 12.

That was however to be the end of the good news.  From the restart Lakin had a kick charged down and a penalty in front of the posts led to three points for the home team.  Then after 20 minutes a neck injury to Mike Nash resulted in a delay in play whilst his neck was secured, and he was stretchered from the field.  Fortunately, he has up and walking after the match without undue side effects.

The delay left Old Penarthians cold and a lack of concentration resulted in a try immediately from a driving maul from a lineout.  This was the final score in the 25 – 12 victory

There was still time for a couple of breaks from Rob Gill, Crimp, Khan and Rhys Lakin, but too often they were from too far out to make an impact on the opposition tryline and the Canton defence recovered to snuff out the opportunities.

On Saturday 6th January the first XV play at home to Treherbert with a scheduled 2.30pm kick off.  The seconds are due to play in a WRU inspired session at Cardiff Arms Park where several clubs have been invited to play a round-robin series of games on the all-weather pitch to ensure some much needed ‘game time’.  The venture is due to commence at 1.00pm.


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