Glynneath RFC | 1st Team 21 - 6 Ystalyfera RFC | 1st Team
Finlay O'reilly
Try 2
Robert Jack O''reilly
Conversion 1
Penalty 3
Steffan Castle
2 Penalty

Match Report
11 September 2018 / Team News

Glynneath 21 – 6 Ystalyfera

Ystalyfera were at Abernant Park in Glynneath for the first away League game of the season. Weather was wet with a slight wind blowing from the South.

The ‘Fera kicked off  towards the Swansea end against the wind, and the returned ball was sliced by outside half Gareth James finding wing Luc Caines. The home defence snatched possession and gave away the first line out. Ystalyfera forwards made the first attack, driving towards the Glynneath try-line. From a penalty and a further 5m line-out, ‘Fera played the ball out along the backs, with wing Bowdy Davies touching down, but the referee disallowed for a forward pass. Glynneath cleared their lines and play settled in midfield. An attempted long kick by Glynneath raced over the Ystalyfera dead-ball line, and the game returned to the home half. Ystalyfera were looking to formulate attacks when they won possession and Glynneath contested for everything. A penalty attempt by full back Steffan Castle 5m inside the Glynneath half fell just short. The game rotated across the half way line, Glynneath attempting to run the ball, but the ‘Fera tackling was most efficient. Quarter of an hour into the game Glynneath made their first effective attack, moving the ball quickly to and fro along their backs. In the 17th minute this was rewarded when outside half Jack O’Reilly converted a penalty: score 3 – 0. From the restart Ystalyfera regained the ball and wing Bowdy Davies penetrated into the home 22. ‘Fera pressing forward were thwarted by a strong Glynneath defence. A sharp Gareth James line kick took play into the corner, and after good work by the visitor pack a penalty was awarded in the 24th minute. Steffan Castle converted to equalise the score 3 – 3. The game continued at pace, Glynneath formulating an attack and ‘Fera scrum half Andrew Jenkins clearing to the 22m line. A Glynneath catch and drive generated a scrum and they won a penalty in the 32nd minute which Jack O’Reilly put over: score 6 – 3. Ystalyfera returned into the attack and an attempted clearance by Glynneath was charged down, only for the referee to award an offside penalty against Ystalyfera. The ‘Fera pack were now beginning to win more scrums from their efforts, and a penalty on the Glynneath 10m line was well converted by Steffan Castle, ending the first half at 6 – 6.

Glynneath started the second period, and gaining possession they neatly moved the ball off a line out and a gap opened in the Ystalyfera defence. Centre Jed O’Reilly burst through and scored the first Try in the 43rd minute: score 11 – 6. Glynneath took advantage of their break and attempted to repeat the process, but the Ystalyfera tackling was resilient. Penaties for scrum offences were now mounting for Ystalyfera and play crept into the Glynneath 22. A powerfull catch and drive was supported by Ystalyfera backs who pushed forward, and with Glynneath players interfering from the floor a score looked inevitable,  but the referee brought play back after seeing an illegal ‘swinging’ arm. Glynneath broke away and important ‘Fera tackles saved the day. Efforts to gain control of the ball were being intensified by both sides, and a midfield tussle ensued. In the 64th minute movement out the line from a line out allowed centre Jed O’Reilly to effect a change of direction and he raced thru the visitors defence to score his and Glynneath’s second Try under the posts. Jack converted lifting the score: 18 – 6. Ystalyfera were not giving up and the forwards worked the ball upfield from the restart. A penalty saw Steffan Castle put his side into the Glynneath corner. The ‘Fera pressure continued but repeated scrums and line outs failed to get any results. In the 70th minute Glynneath made a penetrating attack but dropped the ball after a poor pass. Their attack continued and a further break saw ‘Fera scrum half Andrew Jenkins intercept a pass which was penalised. Jack O’Reilly converted in the 75th minute: score 21 – 6. Glynneath kept pressing in the closing period but no further score ensued.

A well fought, competitive game between two good sides saw Ystalyfera unable to gain an advantage when they were in the driving seat. Glynneath kept at it and eventually they worked out a deserved home win, lifting them to the top of the table, all be it early in the season.

Total penalties for Ystalyfera:  13             Total penalties against:  11

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