Crymych RFC | 1st Team 17 - 28 Ystalyfera RFC | 1st Team
Ifan Rees Phillips
Penalty 4
Llyr Dion Davies
Try 1
Josh Jarrett
1 Try
Steffan Castle
1 Try
2 Conversion
3 Penalty
Scott Gibson
1 Try

Match Report
26 March 2018 / Team News

Crymych 17 - 28 Ystalyfera

Three buses took the better part of Ystalyfera up to Crymych in the Northeast of Pembrokeshire, to play out the remaining National Plate Quarter-Final fixture beneath the high sloped peaks of the Preseli Mountains. The rain kept away and the slightly convex surface was good to play on. The hosts were confident having raised their hopes of avoiding the drop into Division Two, with some good recent results despite currently situated at the bottom. Ystalyfera, still undefeated in Division One West Central came with a well drilled and confident side, seeking to finish the quest of returning back to the final at the Principality Stadium, where they were denied last season losing a drawn game.  

Conditions were dry, cloudy and cold, a breeze crossing the touchlines. Crymych kicked off from the higher end of the field, and Ystalyfera played the ball out along the line where a noticeable gap opened in the Crymych defence, a neat chip kick by full back Steffan Castle gave the perfect opportunity for wing Josh Jarrett to run in the first Try. Steffan converted giving the ‘Fera a 0 – 7 2nd minute lead. From the restart Ystalyfera gave away an immediate offside penalty which Crymych No14 Ifan Phillips kicked over to pull the score back to 3 – 7 in the 3rd minute. The game then settled in the centre of the park where the Ystalyfera pack worked by phases up the field. Crymych gained a turnover however, only for the ball to be kicked out on the full. The first line out followed by two quick scrums allowed the ‘Fera to press hard into the home 22, but Crymych stole the ball and a long kick moved the game into the visitors half. Both sides were seeking to gain the greater possession, the experienced Ystalyfera pack looking for gaps and Crymych kicking what they could downfield. A penalty awarded to Ystalyfera in midfield saw Steffan Castle hit the crossbar, the momentum letting the ‘Fera apply some 5m pressure. Over enthusiasm however resulted in penalties for the home side, and they were able to balance the contest. Following a high tackle In the 23rd minute a further penalty chance came to Ystalyfera and the prodigious Steffan Castle increased the lead 3 – 10. The restart gave Ystalyfera a scrum on the centre spot but another penalty allowed Crymych into the visitor half. From a further scrum crossing between ‘Fera captain (No8) Steffan Jones and outside half (coach) Gareth James gave a chance to Ifan Phillips and he narrowed the score to 6 – 10. Returning into the Crymych half, good ball was cleared to the backs. Smart offloading allowed the terrier Steffan Castle to find a hole in the defence and he run in the second Try in the 33rd minute: score 6 – 15. Crymych were certainly not giving up and the game became a tussle for the ball in midfield. From a line out in the ‘Fera half the home forwards made a positive attack and a simple drive over earned a Try for flanker Llyr Davies to end the first half 11 – 15..

Still in the game Crymych began the second period with much to prove. An attack up the centre of the field gained a further penalty kick in the 44th minute, (score 14 – 15) and the home side very much back in the game. Battle hardened Ystalyfera however were patient and in the 53rd minute a break thru by centre Bowdy Davies saw him give a neat pass to scrum half Scott Gibson. Never one to miss a chance Scott crossed over for the third ‘Fera Try in the 50th minute. This was coverted by Castle giving a 14 – 22 lead. This was a challenge for Crymych to come back again. The game was now opening up and after another 5m line out effort Crymych got a fourth penalty in the 62nd minute: score 17 – 22. Ystalyfera kept a tight grip and the strength of the scrums began to tell. Crymych were being starved of possession and further Steffan Castle penalties in the 72nd and 80th minute sealed the result at 17 – 28 for Ystalyfera.

This was a well contested game with both sides looking to outflank their opponents at every opportunity. The experience and well drilled patience of Ystalyfera proved the winner, Crymych with a young determined team showing a never say die quality.

The penalty counts were

10 for Ystalyfera – 4 in scrum, 1 holding ball when on the floor, 2 offside, 1 double tackle, 1 in from the side and 1 not 10 yards..

15 for Crymych – 5 offside, 4 holding ball on floor, 2 high tackles, 1 over the top, 1 in from side, 1 in scrum and 1 crossing.

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