Fixture

Ystalyfera RFC | 1st Team 30 - 3 Maesteg RFC | 1st Team
Luc Caines
Try 1
Josh Jarrett
Try 1
Nathan Cornelius
Try 1
Steffan Castle
Conversion 3
Penalty 3

Match Report
16 January 2018 / Team News

Ystalyfera 30 – 3 Maesteg

The 4th Round of the Welsh National Plate saw Ystalyfera home to fellow Division One West Central side Maesteg. The ‘Fera had already beaten the visitors narrowly 20 – 19 back on 30th September in a tight hard fought game, and Maesteg had defeated top of Division One West side Dunvant 37 – 33 in a previous round, so a well contested confrontation was expected. Conditions were cloudy with light rain and no wind.

Ystalyfera kicked off toward the Swansea end and the first phase settled in the home half of the field. Despite penalties to Maesteg the ‘Fera gradually worked the ball into the middle, and both sides looked for gaps in defence to launch an attack. Ystalyfera forwards attempted to increase pressure and Maesteg resorted to kicking out of defence. After 13 minutes, the home backs quickly passed the ball out and switched play back, allowing scrum half Nathan Cornelius to run thru and cross for the first Try. This was converted by full back Steffan Castle: score 7 – 0. From the restart a long penalty attempt by Maesteg outside half Tadhg McGuckin narrowly missed. The visitors then attempted to move the ball across their backs, working into the home 22. This effort earned a penalty for offside in the 22nd minute, converted by McGuckin: score 7 – 3. The restart took the game back into the Maesteg half and after a penalty Ystalyfera attempted a catch and drive in the changing room corner. The visitors broke away only for their backs to drop the ball, and play settled in midfield. The strength of the home pack now began to take effect and the ‘Fera were soon back in the changing room corner. A positive attack by the forwards was supported by an angled run by winger Josh Jarrett who forced his was thru in the 31st minute for the second home Try. This was converted by Steffan Castle: score 14 – 3. This disrupted the visitors’ concentration and Ystalyfera began to pass the ball across the park with some confidence. In the 35th minute Steffan Castle bagged a penalty kick and Maesteg were all at sea keeping Ystalyfera out, another penalty was gifted in the 39th minute leaving a half time score of 20 – 3.   

The game restarted with a Maesteg scrum in the home 22, Ystalyfera getting a penalty. The visitors were attempting to recover the score with a big effort and Ystalyfera defended efficiently. The home backs broke out only to drop the ball, and another attack off a scrum saw another chance missed. Conditions and the pace of the contest were beginning to affect both sets of players. Ystalyfera worked the game slowly up-field with the resilience of their pack, and in the 58th minute the lead was stretched with a third Steffan Castle penalty: score 23 – 3. Maesteg were not giving up and attempted to move all the possession they could muster, but the home defence was most resolute. In the 69th minute Ystalyfera raced the ball off the back of a line-out and wing Luc Caines, who had been a worry for Maesteg throughout the match, raced around for his first and the ‘Fera’s third Try. This was again converted by the steady and consistent Steffan Castle, who finished the game with 15 points. Final score 30 – 3.  

Ystalyfera played with a concentration and determination that ensured a victory. Maesteg made a valiant effort but were overwhelmed by the strength and across the field ability of the home side.

Now in the Quarter Finals of the National Plate, Semi-Final of the West Wales Cup and undefeated in the League, Ystalyfera have much to play for and without saying, a lot more work to do before any though of success can be talked about. Keep it up lads!!!!!!!!!

Penalty counts were;

13 for Ystalyfera – 4 scrum offences, 4 holding ball on floor, 2 offside, 1 obstruction and 2 not 10 yds.

8 for Maesteg – 1 over the top. 2 holding ball, 4 offside, and 1 crossing.

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