Wanderers made to work hard for win

By Alyn Humphries | 12/03/2017



“Look in the book as they say in cricket” commented manager Haval Ibrahim “The score at the end of the day doesn’t reflect the game. Both sides will feel that they left a lot of points out there but we achieved another bonus point win so we are happy”

“Great to be back playing for Dunvant again” added Steff Simpson.

On a grey but dry day the somewhat circuitous route taken by the Wanderers bus to deepest Dunvant didn’t provide the best warm up and the home side were out of the blocks first. Showing a willingness to move the ball wide at every opportunity the Wanderers defence came under intense pressure. The visitors found it difficult to get their hands on the ball and it was no surprise when Dunvant went ahead with a converted try 7-0. The Wanderers settled and started to show that with ball in hand they would be dangerous. With Luke Fish kicking well for position they set up play in the home side 22 and from a lineout they struck. First a good driving maul and then fast recycling out wide saw Curtis Hicks offload to James Loxton who dived over. Fish added the conversion and it was all square at 7-7. There followed a period of pressure from the visitors as it seemed they would take control but despite creating chances they could not ease in front and the home side struck back.  Continuing to move the ball at times Dunvant swarmed all over the Wanderers and their second try put them ahead 12-7 as the half entered its final quarter. The visitors were under the cosh and the travelling faithful were hoping to get to the break without conceding more tries as the Wanderers fought a rear-guard action. Once again, a great defensive set and some lazy handling from the home side, gave the Wanderers a chance to break clear. Cameron Gibbon broke away, supported by Myles Churcher and despite being hauled down just inside the opposition 22 the Wanderers were back on the attack. From a scrum Dan Apsee drove on and after some efficient recycling Apsee was on hand again to drive over. With a Fish conversion the sides went into the break at 12-14.  

The Wanderers regrouped at the break and seemed to have more discipline with their play at the start of the second half. Both sides continued to give up possession with a generosity which would infuriate both sets of coaches. Fish had a chance of an easy penalty but he was obviously on a different page to everyone else as he got turned over short of the line after taking a quick tap but a loose kick from the home side allowed the Wanderers to counter. John Preddy opened the defence and just when it seemed a score was inevitable the ball was spilled.  The play was back in the home side 22 and with some good pressure at a scrum the Wanderers edged further ahead. Apsee drove on and when the ball was released Fish made up for his earlier mistake as he crashed over for a try he converted himself 12-21. The visitors were now warming to the task. A break from deep by Ellis Rudder put Jake Conway away and he was hauled down just short of the line. The subsequent home side lineout was put under pressure and when the ball went loose Wanderers captain Aaron Fowler was on hand to trundle over for the bonus point score 12-26. Whether both sides then relaxed no one knows but there followed a bizarre few minutes when the ball went back and forth from 22 to 22 with both sides carving out chances only to give them up when scores seemed inevitable. The collective madness continued and the Wanderers discipline got back on the bus with 15 minutes to go! A yellow card to the visitors and then a spilled ball set Dunvant away to score and they were back in it at 19-26. The home side pounded the visitor’s line and only desperate defence prevented an equalising score. Time ticked on with the Wanderers faithful counting down every second as Dunvant threw everything at the visitors. Another yellow made the task more difficult but sterling defence and the desire which the side now possess furnished a penalty which after one last play saw the ball spilled by the home side and the game ending with the Wanderers relieved to take away the five points.

Wanderers scorers

Tries: James Loxton, Dan Apsee, Aaron Fowler, Luke Fish

Cons: Luke Fish (3)

Wanderers Massiv man of the match: Luke Fish

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