Rhigos RFC | 1st Team 20 - 17 Pontrhydyfen RFC | 1st Team

Match Report
06 November 2017 / Team News


Three tries for Rhigos, all scored by number eight, man of the match, Jonny Smith from short range driving scrums was the difference between Rhigos and visitors Pontrhydyfen who scored one try themselves. Dean Hawkes kicked the other points with a penalty and conversion.

This was a really tight match with two determined defences and two strong hard working packs cancelling each other out. Rhigos had the better scrum as demonstrated by the pushover tries but Ponty had the more efficient line out. This meant that both pairs of half backs had plenty of possession but neither side had any real sparkle behind.

Rhigos were very pleased to have emerged with a win when their playing strength was reduced to just 15 fit players plus the bench of Greg and Emori. We played with 5 front row forwards on the pitch. The 3 tries were down to good scrummaging thanks to the work of Darren Magee, Richard Smith and James Tobin so they earned their corn and also Duane Dudley in the back row and Andrew Holloway in the centre both played a huge part of the defence that stopped Ponty.

The score line was close throughout the match. As home side Rhigos always looked as if they should win but Ponty kept plugging away and their better discipline in the red zone gave them penalties that ensured they never looked a beaten side till the final whistle.

It was Ponty who struck first with a penalty after 5 minutes of pressure in Rhigos 22 before Dean Hawkes kicked Rhigos into Ponty's 22. The lineout became a scrum and the Rhigos pack shunted Ponty over the line for Jonny to score his first. Dean missed the conversion. Five minutes later kicked to the left touchline and again the lineout turned into a scrum and again Rhigos shunted Ponty backwards for Jonny to score his second try and this time Dean converted. 

Back down the field play went this time Ponty laid seige to Rhigos try line and eventually after seven or eight phases they scored their try just a little too far out for a conversion. Just on half time indiscipline cost Rhigos another three points so it was 12 - 11 going into the break.

We had taken some heavy hits. Jonny Smith had taken a nasty shoulder charge into his back, Lewis Morgan was hit with a late one that stopped his dancing and Gareth Davies twisted his ankle after a long surging run when he got clobbered in a double hit. All three shook off their knocks and played on. Big pat on the back for Dai James First Aid. Even more admiration for their grit and strong mentality to take one for the team.

We started the second half strongly and our pack well led by Dwayne and Jonny and Cameron knocking over anything with legs Joss and Josh carrying and driving was dominant. We forced a penalty under their posts when a try looked certain and Dean took the three points. From the kick off Dean put us back down in the red zone and again our scrum delivered for Jonny to score his third try a just reward for an afternoon of real graft on his part. 20 - 11 and chasing the bonus point try but it was Ponth who turned the tables on us and were stronger in the last ten minutes. All the tackling, the heavy surface, no subs and three injuries took their toll. We conceded penalties allowing Ponty to get into our red zone and they kicked six points to bring the score to 20 - 17 which wa sjust enough to clinch the points. Coaches verdict - a win is a win and with only 15 players available a satisfactory result that tested the squad.

Next week to Ogmore Vale for an early KO of 2 pm. and 8 games already played this season and 3rd place in the League - Still Happy Days.


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