LLANTWIT FADRE 10
“That last try is a real bonus on a tough afternoon” commented Head coach Mike Sheehan “Conditions weren’t easy for both sides and despite the fact that we aren’t totally happy with the performance it’s another tick in the win column”.
On a very heavy pitch following the overnight downpour the Wanderers had first use of a strong wind but it was Llantwit Fadre who started the better. Establishing good field position they attempted to power their way over only to find the home side defence very solid. The Wanderers settled quickly and once again their scrum established dominance early on. Taking play deep into the visitor’s territory Dan Crimmins went close after a break from Darren Ryan and then it was Ryan himself who opened the scoring. A penalty from a defensive scrum was taken quickly by Ross Gibbon and Ryan was on hand to touch down after being held up just short. Luke fish added the conversion 7-0. Using the wind to good advantage the Wanderers started to dominate proceedings and territory. The Llantwit defence was stretched but they held out well and with the home side declining kickable penalties in favour of quick taps and lineouts they kept the score at 7-0. Eventually their line was breached again. A close quarter drive from Haval Ibrahim was held up on the line and quick thinking by scrum half Tom James allowed him to slip beside the ruck to score. Fish converted 14-0. Despite having their backs against the ropes the visitors rallied well. Knowing they would have the elements in the second half they battled strongly and finally had some reward for their efforts. From a penalty in mid field they established a foothold in the Wanderers 22 and they went on a series of forward drives. The Wanderers defence was stretched and when they illegally prevented the score on 2 occasions the referee went under the posts for a penalty try. The easy conversion gave the Llantwit side hope at 14-7. The Wanderers went back on the attack and as the half time whistle sounded it was probably the visitors coaching team that headed for the huddle in better spirits.
The Wanderers elected for a change of shirts at half time although Steve’s choice of alternative kit left a few people in the crowd scratching their heads as the home side came out in kit which did little to distinguish between the sides. Getting rid of the first half mud clearly helped Lloyd Chalke. From the first scrum of the half he went on a wide run after being set free by Fish. Breaking the defensive line he raced away and with a flamboyant dive he crashed in the corner. Fish converted from out wide 21-7. Both sides started to ring the changes but the ever increasing heavy pitch seemed to swallow the game and it stagnated in an arm wrestle between the 22s. Llantwit were giving as good as they got and once again when they had the chance they took advantage. From a poor kick chase after Wanderers had defended well they recycled the ball well in the home side 22 and a drop goal reduced the arrears to 21-10. The game entered its last quarter and as the home side strove for the elusive bonus point the attacks became more and more disjointed. Attempts at quick penalties, attacking scrums and lineouts failed as the mud and a resolute defence of the visitors kept their line intact. Subs Curtis Hicks and Ryan Davis went close but the Wanderers were kept at bay until the last play of the game. The home side were awarded a penalty 5 metres from the line and they elected for a scrum. The scrum was pulled down and another penalty awarded. As everyone wondered what to do next Ibrahim took a quick tap and just about squeezed over for the bonus point score. Fish added his fourth conversion. Final Score 28-10.
Massiv man of the match Lloyd Chalke
Tries: Darren Ryan, Tom James, Lloyd Chalke, Haval Ibrahim
Cons: Luke Fish (4)