Heol y Cyw RFC | 1st Team 51 - 0 Taffs Well RFC | 1st Team
Rhys William Eskins
Try 1
Paul Short
Try 2
Conversion 5
Penalty 2
Christopher Cooper
Try 1
Rhys Pope
Try 1
Jordan Hawkins
Try 2

Match Report
28 October 2018 / Team News

WRU Cup - Heol y Cyw Too Hot For Unfamiliar Looking Taff’s Well

With the emphasis on league positioning, looking after the walking wounded and several unavailabilities – there would be seventeen players missing across the two 1st & 2nd XV squads which meant that the team facing Heol y Cyw would see one regular choice player in position in the pack plus three backs from the most recent starting league line-up. As a testament to squad numbers, the 2nd XV still managed to put out a full squad to take on Fairwater in their cup match.

With the hosts sneaking a win over the visitors in the league after coming down from Div.1, this game was always going to be a difficult one for a Taff’s Well side missing so many regulars but equally, this presented an opportunity to a number of players to stake their claim in the 1st team squad.

Heol y Cyw Mean Business

After a promising start from Taff’s Well showing willingness to get the ball moving, it was outside-half Paul Short who was to open the scoring for the Heol y Cyw with a penalty and conversion putting the home side into the lead at 10-0. With early ascendancy in the scrums and two successive wins against the head, the home pack supplied the platform for No.8 Rhys Pope to shrug aside some weak tackling to stroll over and stretch the lead to 17-0 thanks to Short’s conversion.

Too Many Errors

After weathering the storm, Taff’s Well started to settle with some meaningful possession which gained two successive lineouts close to the whitewash but it was some clever defence that was to pilfer the ball to clear the danger. With Heol-y-Cyw on the attack and a piece of defensive misunderstanding – it would be outside-half Paul Short who would take advantage and ghost through for a solo effort which stretched the score to 24-0 with time left to play for half-time.

Huff & Puffed

This was looking like being a long afternoon despite the efforts of Rhys Green playing out of position at No.8 and the speed of full-back Ronan Barrett from full-back but as try as they might, Taff’s Well could not work enough space against an organised rush defence. With another spell of pressure spelling a yellow card for Heol y Cyw and a penalty-won lineout 15m out; the reward for a great rolling maul and a solid scrum was to see the ball lost and cleared for more frustration and a turnaround score which saw the home side firmly in command.

Half-Time Score:  Heol y Cyw 24 – 0 Taff’s Well

Second Half

With scrum-half Craig Field getting away some sweet passes and some good early back-line movement; Centre Ryan Smith was put through a gap 25m out but as the ball was fed wide, it found itself in the hands of forwards instead of backs and the move was to stutter and stall as the home defence reorganised and snuffed out the danger. Winger Mike Lindon was also getting in the act with some fine direct running which was causing problems for defenders but the passing was pedestrian and lacked conviction which meant that the Heol y Cyw defence had time to pick their targets.

Lack of Concentration

As the scrums were evening out and the game was starting to even up, some shoddy tackling coupled with some fine passing put the hosts in for another try. Young winger Tom Cattle was adding some good moments in defence and attack as he took the ball with some clever footwork under pressure to chip and chase which was enough to force the home defence to get away a rushed clearance kick. The reply was deadly as from a defending scrum, the ball was swept along the backs to add a razor finish and another try to take the score to 38-0 with the game out of sight.

Disappointing Finish

Considering the odds and scoreline, the side had been sticking to their task and fashioning out some promising periods but there were obvious quality differences which were to come to bear nearing the end. With a hint of tiredness in the air, Heol y-Cyw playing to the bell and the self-destruct button pressed in defence, two more tries would be added to bring a rather lopsided look to the scoreline as the home side progressed to the next round of the cup.

Final Score:  Heol y Cyw 51 v 0 Taff’s Well

The Verdict

The result was never in doubt but the final couple of tries were disappointing as it did not reflect the effort put in by a side that had been hit with so many changes. The pack were honest with hooker Lloyd James putting in his normal shift albeit normally at prop aided and abetted by prop John Davies putting in another ‘Peter Pan’ performance at fifty-one years of age – I’ve simply no idea how he does it… Craig Field did well to get his backs going under pressure with Ronan Barrett and Mike Lindon causing problems with ball in hand and Tom Cattle showed maturity in dealing with some tough situations. The standout for Taff’s Well was again Rhys Green playing in the unaccustomed role of No.8 as he did his best to stand up in the face of adversity.

There would be no point on dwelling on the result as the cards were dealt before the game was played and many squad or 2nd team players had the opportunity to put on a Taff’s Well 1st team shirt. The difference between playing 1st & 2nd team rugby is not just about ability, it’s about tenacity and strength of mind to play a full 80 minutes with fitness playing a huge part. It’s always easy to follow a side that plays with pride, and players who may have struggled with the rise in level certainly didn’t let themselves down when it came to effort.

Fairwater 2nd XV v Taff’s Well 2nd XV

The second XV pulled all the strings to cobble together a squad which went down fighting in a 25-10 loss to Fairwater.  Despite the knock-on effect of the unavailabilities, there were good performances by James Jeffries, George Howell, Jack Monteigne, Nathan O’Brien, Ithan Williams and Jordan Cadwallader before he was unlucky enough to dislocate his knee and stretchered off to hospital. Tries for Jordan and Ricky Edwards kept Taff’s Well in the game before they finally succumbed; well done to Team Manager Barry Morgan for pulling out the stops to honour the fixture.

No game next week but the women hope to host Morriston in a league fixture next Sunday at home.

Dave Beese  mail

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