Old Penarthians RFC | 1st Team 14 - 17 Treherbert RFC | 1st Team
Fearghas Gough
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John Patterson
Try 1
Jonathan Crimp
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Match Report
10 January 2018 / Team News

Old Penarthians v Treherbert Match Report

Last Saturday, Treherbert visited Cwrt-y-vil Playing Fields in confident mood from their third position in Division 3 East Central (B) to play Old Penarthians, who lay towards the bottom of the table.  It was however Old Pens who started the brightest playing with a strong cold north easterly wind at their backs.

Despite losing two forwards on the morning of the match and already without two other injured regulars the team roused by an impassioned captain Rhys Lakin were anything but underdogs when after three minutes, two mistakes by the attacking Treherbert forwards stifled their progress. After the second error Tom Rogers gathered a knock on and took the ball into contact. 

Forwards Chris Cobbold and Sam Hall were in support and they quickly passed the ball to scrum half David Lakin. In turn he passed to Jonathan Crimp, who transferred the ball to Rhys Lakin.  The centre seeing an opportunity out wide threw a long pass, that missed out his fellow centre, into the arms of winger Fearghas Gough.  Gough caught the ball on the touchline and with 50m to run put his head down and outstripped the cover defence to touch down under the posts.

The conversion by Crimp gave Penarthians a seven-point lead after four minutes

The much bigger Treherbert pack struck back and with a dominant scrum dominated play for the next ten minutes.  They were however limited by their poor handling and repeat infringements relieved some of the pressure.  This was assisted by a determined defence led by Tom Sidford, Rhys Blake and the rest of the forwards and supplemented by the skipper, Lakin.

Another knock on by the Treherbert second row on half way went forward to Crimp.  He looked up and seeing space behind the Treherbert threequarters he kicked ahead.  Gough was again the quickest to react and he reached the bouncing ball first to prod the ball further forward and past the defending fullback.  This left supporting centre Jon Patterson to collect the ball and run over the try line to score unopposed. The successful kick from Crimp gave Penarthians a 14-point advantage

It was then only a fully committed defence on their own goal line that maintained that lead with the Treherbert team trying to muscle their way over the try line.  They were again unsuccessful and when a tackle by Stuart Clarke led to another turnover under the Penarthians posts, David Lakin passed to George Kynaston to send the winger of an 90m race for a try.  Kynaston beat his opposite number but with 40m to go he ran out of gas and was caught by the cover defence.  A kick ahead may have proved positive with David Lakin in support but Kynaston was bundled into touch.

Pressure was however maintained, and despite being reduced to fourteen men after a yellow card was awarded to Cobbold two attacking line-outs nearly resulted in the forwards forcing themselves over the tryline.  The last opportunity coming after a possible kickable penalty was declined that could have increased the half time lead of 14 points to nil.

The second half started as poorly as the first half had started strongly.  Firstly, Josh Alcock was shown a yellow card by the referee for an infringement at a ruck in front of the posts.  The penalty award was successful, and the score was 14 – 3.  Then three minutes later a kick to touch by Scott McCarthy failed to reach its target and Treherbert ran the ball back.  A couple of untypical missed tackles eventually led to a try and conversion and a 14 – 10 scoreline.

This did not deter the Old Penarthians and they were still willing to run out of defence.  The wind however hampered clearance kicks and Treherbert were in the ascendancy.  Only determined defence, epitomised by a joint tackle by Sol Khan and Sidford under their own posts that left everyone surprised that any of the participants stood up afterwards, kept the score in favour of the Old Pens.

With twenty minutes remaining a crucial decision by the referee to award a third yellow card, this time to Old Penarthians captain Lakin was to influence the result. Lakin had been crucial in the defensive set-up and in his absence a run into midfield from a Treherbert lineout that many supporters considered to have been ‘not straight’ set up the supporting forwards and Treherbert bullied their way over for a try that was converted.  Treherbert now led 17 – 14.

The last ten minutes were well contested and Penarthians continued to look for scoring opportunities.  On one occasion a kick ahead by McCarthy was not picked up cleanly by the defending Treherbert player and the ball bounced forward.  It was picked up by a retreating Treherbert player in an offside position on the twenty-two metre line but the referee failed to notice the infringement and an obvious attacking opportunity from a penalty was lost.

There were no more scores and it was a very dejected and battered Old Penarthians that left the pitch having given so much effort but to ultimately come up short in the match.  A losing bonus point was some reward but after such a thrilling start a more positive outcome would have been deserved against one of the leading teams in the league.

Next Saturday Old Penarthians travel to the league’s bottom club, Ferndale, in what has to be considered a ‘must win’ match.  The kick off is scheduled for 2.30pm.  Currently the seconds do not have a fixture but are looking for a game at home.


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