“A rude awakening for these young players. We were a little naïve in our approach and it shows that if you are not on top of your game you will be punished.” Commented Martyn Fowler after the defeat at Treorchy.
“Our make-shift backline looked all at sea and it was disappointing that having hauled ourselves back into the game at half time we did not adapt.” Added Manager John Lyons.
On a bright afternoon in Treorchy the Wanderers could not have got off to a better start. From a stolen lineout they took play deep into the home side territory and when the ball was recycled well Josh Male, on his league debut, crossed in the corner to open the scoring 0-5. The lead was short lived. Treorchy got into their stride and the Wanderers were clearly at loggerheads with the referee as a series of penalties pegged them back. A penalty for the home side reduced the arrears and it was clear that the home side were keen to put the ball through the hands at every opportunity. The visitors were starved of possession and it was not long before Treorchy were ahead. Slicing through the midfield, something which happened all to easily all afternoon they scored their first try 10-5. The penalties against the Wanderers continued as did the pressure from the home side. The visitors were further troubled as Max Wootten, returning after a season long injury, was injured again and carried off on a stretcher to be replaced by Dylan Lawley. The Zebras were now in full flow and a second try stretched their lead soon afterwards to 20-5 with a penalty and converted try. It looked ominous for the visitors. Then the tide turned. Treorchy once again attacked but they spilled the ball deep in Wanderers territory. Quick release from the defence got the ball to Phillip Pariyo who needed no invitation. Using his electric pace he raced away to score a solo try which he converted himself 20-12. The score gave the visitors some momentum and with some possession at last they exerted some pressure of their own. Using the pack to powerful advantage They gained good field position and after a well organised driving lineout Ross Gibbon crashed over to score. Pariyo converted 20-19. The Wanderers suddenly had their tails up and from the kick off they were ahead. A neat chip by Myles Churcher was gathered by Cameron Gibbon and he raced away. He was tackled on the line but the referee adjudged the tackle to be high in the act of scoring and he awarded the penalty try 20-26. Treorchy responded immediately and once again their fluid backs created pressure again. The game was being played at a frenetic pace, more like an end of season run around than a first league game and it was no surprise when the Treorchy backs waltzed through the visitor’s defence again to send the sides into the break at 27-26 after an 8 try first half.
The Wanderers made some changes at half time but their style of play continued to provide the home side with plenty of opportunity. From their first possession of the half they cut the defence in two again and extended their lead to 32-26. The visitors seemed content to try to outplay the home side at their own game and they did have a spell of looking dangerous. Myles Churcher forced his way over to reduce the lead making it 32-31 but the Wanderers could not sustain any control on the game. Time and time again the home side backs were allowed to maraude through the Wanderers lines and the visitors clearly wilted in the last quarter. A sixth try extended the lead to 39-31 and soon afterwards they added another to put the game out of sight at 46-31. A penalty put another nail in the Wanderers coffin and Treorchy followed that up with their 8th try to round off a well-deserved and resounding victory 56-31.
Tries: Phillip Pariyo, Ross Gibbon, Josh Male, Myles Churcher, Penalty try.
Cons: Phillip Pariyo (3)
Wanderers MOM: Aaron Fowler
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