Waunarlwydd RFC | 1st Team 17 - 21 Ystalyfera RFC | 1st Team
Steffan Castle
3 Conversion
Andrew David Jenkins
1 Try
Luc Caines
2 Try

Match Report
09 May 2018 / Team News

Waunarlwydd 17 –21 Ystalyfera

Ystalyfera visited Waunarlwydd at Rosland Road on a glorious 5th May, with only a slight breeze to help cool the players from the bright sunshine.

The Waun kicked off toward the entrance, and play began with an even exchange to gain control of the ball. In the 4th minute the home side gained the first points with a gifted penalty for scrum half Lee Evans. Ystalyfera responded after the restart with a central attack, only for some loose passing to give Waunarwydd the chance to counter into the ‘Fera 22. From a scramble Ystalyfera broke out but a calamity of errors ended with a midfield scrum awarded to the ‘Fera. The Waun hooker was notably striking early, and after taking the ball against the head, the Waunarlwydd back row stormed ahead. Popping the ball to the capable Lee Evans, he ran in the first Try. Taking the conversion under the posts, the score after 12 minutes was Lee Evans 10 Ystalyfera 0. Collecting the restart Ystalyfera again made positive moves to work the game upfield, but further miss passing gave possession to the home side. Waunarlwydd now began to play with greater conviction and from a line out on the ‘Fera 22, worked a catch and drive into the middle of the field. The Ystalyfera defence however proved strong, and the contest rotated around the centre. Another attack off a lineout penetrated the Ystalyfera cover and outside half Gareth James performed an excellent line kick. From a penalty Ystalyfera spread the ball and wing Luc Caines raced for the home tryline. Support added to the attack and Gareth James was denied a try. A positive 5m scrum saw another chance for centre Bowdy Davies but Waunarwydd worked hard and cleared the danger. From a penalty, play moved back into the Ystalyfera half, a chip and chase by full back Steffan Castle ending up in a scrum. Ystalyfera were combating their ball handling issues with determined play. The ‘Fera forwards were driving forward at every opportunity, problems being restricted to the line out, where Waunarlwydd were masters of possession. At the end of the first half Waunarlwydd attempted a quick break but the Ystalyfera defenders kept them out.

Immediately in the second half Ystalyfera attacked purposefully upfield. Switching the ball quickly, a change in direction by scrum half Andy “shenko” Jenkins drove thru for the first Ystalyfera Try in the 42nd minute. This was converted by Steffan Castle lifting the score to 10 – 7. A set of kicks ended with a further attack in the home half, and Ystalyfera began to search for gaps in the Waun defence. A long kick ahead by Gareth James went too far and Waunarlwydd had to drop out. The game began to develop with more pressure being exerted by Ystalyfera, they wanting to redeem the score. In the 64th minute, Waunarlwydd wrecked the plan after a chase for a loose ball saw Daniel Moyes pick up and cross over for a second Waunarlwydd Try. This was converted by Lee Evans lifting the lead to 17 – 7. Ystalyfera were not to be denied however, and after Steffan Castle put the visitors deep into the home 22 after the restart, the ‘Fera recovered the ball and passed out along the line to wing Luc Caines, who scored the second Ystalyfera Try in the 68th minute. Steffan Castle converted with a superb kick to pull the score back to 17 – 14. Waunarlwydd were certainly not relaxing and from the restart they worked hard for a 5m line out. The ‘Fera forwards responded and broke out, a resulting electric attack with fast passing, stretching the home defenders to their utmost. Pressure was certainly on now for Ystalyfera to take the lead, and with ball movement now at its best the visitors kept in the ascendancy. ‘Fera worked play out to the left, and flanker Ben Williams received a dangerously high tackle. The referee allowed advantage and Luc Caines stretched behind the line for an 80+1 minute Try. This was converted by Steffan Castle with a most difficult kick, to end the game 17 – 21 to Ystalyfera.

The crush of end of season fixtures is never easy. Ystalyfera responded well in this game to fight back and deal with ball handling issues whilst competing with a determined Waunarlwydd side. Collectively keeping on the positive side, the ‘Fera worked hard. It paid off in the end, earning a deserved victory and first league double over an always difficult Waunarlwydd.

The penalty counts were;

7 for Ystalyfera – 1 not releasing player, 4 offside, 1 high tackle and 1 in line out.

4 for Waunarlwydd – 1 not releasing ball, 1 in line out, 1 late tackle and 1 high tackle.


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