LLANTWIT FADRE 10
“The lack of rugby over recent weeks certainly showed in both sides” commented coach Mike Sheehan. “It was a very stop start game but we certainly improved as the game progressed”
“We couldn’t get the forward platform that we were looking for” added captain Aaron Fowler “we’ve been using the downtime in recent weeks to work on some new things and they need time to gel”
On a cold but bright afternoon in Church Village the Wanderers established early field position but despite moving the ball wide and driving hard with the forwards the Llantwit defence remained solid. Early handling errors thwarted several attacks and when the Wanderers were penalised at a ruck the home side were able to relieve the pressure for the first time after 10 minutes of defensive duties. Very soon the visitors were back on the attack Luke Fish using the wind to once again establish good field position. The attacks came thick and fast but once again poor execution and solid tackling prevented scores. The home side were living off scraps of possession and they were struggling to get a real foothold in the game but the stalemate remained. The Wanderers lineout was under pressure and that prevented any real forward platform being established. After 17 minutes the deadlock was eventually broken. Llantwit tried an exit strategy from their own 22 but when the ball was turned over the Wanderers took full advantage. Moving the ball Lloyd Chalke attacked out wide. It seemed that the defence had him swallowed up but Chalke’s determination and strength saw him shrug off the attention of 3 defenders and he crashed over in the corner. Codey Rees missed the conversion from out wide but the Wanderers were ahead 0-5. The score galvanised the home side and when the Wanderers failed to deal with the kick off they were on the attack. Moving the ball wide and going through the phases they were awarded a penalty but the attempt went wide. The pressure was now on the visitors and the penalty count against the Wanderers started to mount. A second penalty shot from Llantwit hit the bar and rebounded into the hands of one of the home side but good defence turned the ball over and the Wanderers cleared. Soon afterwards the home side were awarded for their efforts. From another penalty they established a lineout deep in Wanderers territory and a well organised drive from the forwards saw them crash over in the corner. Back came the visitors but the game was punctuated by penalties against both sides. From one such penalty Rees established the lead again 5-8 but neither side could gain any real momentum in their play and the half ended with Spencer Ward Henry receiving a yellow card for a tip tackle and the sides went into the break with the Wanderers narrowly ahead 5-8.
The second half followed the first with the whistle being heard on regular occasions as both sides transgressed at rucks and mauls. Rees extended the lead with his second penalty 5-11 but the game remained evenly poised. As has happened many times this season a moment of Crimmins magic set the Wanderers on the way. Fish established good field position with his accurate kicking and when the home side saw yellow for the first time the visitors took their chance. From a lineout on the home side 22 Dan Crimmins broke clear and ignoring the support (no surprise there!) he drove for the line carrying defenders on his back to score the Wanderers second try. Rees landed a superb conversion in the wind and the visitors were clear at 5-18. The game started to open up as the home side strove to get back in the game. An attack from deep nearly resulted in a home side score but solid defence allowed the visitors to clear. Both sides started to call for the cavalry and the game ebbed and flowed back and forth. As more space became available chances came thick and fast but the game was still punctuated by penalty after penalty. Whilst the home side were down to 14 the Wanderers third try put the game beyond doubt. Rees went close after an attack out wide and as he was brought down Jake Conway, up in support took the final pass to score under the posts. Rees converted and the Wanderers were away 5-25. Llantwit were not going to lie down though and they showed good spirit as they mounted several attacks. The Wanderers defence were stretched to the limit and as more penalties were awarded the inevitable score appeared as a quick tap saw the home side crash over for their second try 10—25. Back came the home side and once again a penalty handed the home side an opportunity. Tom James seizing a chance took a quick tap and he cut through the would be tacklers and broke clear to score in the corner 10-30. The last few minutes saw the home side throw caution to the wind as they tried to attack from their own 22. Despite their efforts they could not break clear and when Peter Lloyd stole the ball deep in the Llantwit 22 a score was inevitable. The ball was moved wide and Ryan Davis crashed over for the 5th try and with the Fish conversion the final score was 10-37.
Try: Lloyd Chalke, Dan Crimmins, Tom James, Jake Conway, Ryan Davis
Con: Codey Rees (2), Luke Fish
Pen: Codey Rees (2)
Massiv Man of the match: Luke Fish.