Llantwit Major RFC | 1st Team 30 - 7 Old Penarthians RFC | 1st Team
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Match Report
17 September 2019 / Team News

Old Penarthians v Llantwit Major Match Report

Following a long hot summer and the first XV captain’s wedding Old Penarthians kicked off their 2019/20 Division 3 South East (B) campaign away to Llantwit Major.  The match day temperature was still hot but after an initial period of competitive rugby the second half was long and the team came away with a loss by 30 points to 7. 

Coaches Simon Hurley and Anthony Davies, who are entering their fourth season with the club, were relatively pleased with the performance considering this was the first contact game of the season, after the preseason friendlies were cancelled, and the training sessions had been disrupted by holidays and injuries.

There is however much room for improvement and well attended training sessions over the next couple of weeks are going to be essential in order to gain the level of performance that was evident in the second half of last season.

The team line up was very much the same as last year although both wingers John Patterson and Fearghas Gough have moved away.  Their places were taken by Mark Sadler and the vocal Rowan Allcock.  Another absentee was last season’s Player-of-the-Year Adan Cole who is progressing a career change in London and his playing opportunities will be limited.

The back row of Joel deClaire, Josh Allcock and Louis Chandler were however an effective unit throughout the match creating opportunities in attack and providing stout defence. Chandler in particular gave everything to the cause, possibly because he was proudly wearing the new 1st XV playing kit sponsored by his company, SM Scaffold.

The game itself kicked off, after warm-up matches featuring the U9s and U10s of the respective clubs Mini & Junior sections, with Old Pens playing into the sun and up the slope.  This was probably the reason the Llantwit tactics featured many ‘box kicks’. These were however effectively dealt with by Nathan Facey at full back and the tactic seemed overused.

Llantwit took the early ascendancy and only good try line defence with deClaire, Tom Sidford and Scott Mackie to the fore as part of a well organised forward unit prevented a score.  With turn over penalties being conceded Nathan Smith was able to relieve the pressure with long well directed kicks to touch.

It was from one of these relieving kicks that a line out was won cleanly by Josh Allcock and the ball driven into the Llantwit defence by Chandler.  The ball was recycled and Tomos Hillman passed to Smith.  A miss move around Jon Crimp released centre Chris Poole on an outside break and he managed to pass back inside to Facey who crossed for a try which he converted himself.  After 20 minutes Penarthians led by 7 points to nil

After 27 minutes Old Pens thought they had scored again after a concerted forward effort featuring Mackie, James Roach, Peter Bennett and Sidford only for the referee to adjudge that in the act of scoring there was a second illegal movement.

The rest of the half belonged to Llantwit with a penalty kicked after 34 minutes after a harsh offside decision in midfield, a penalty missed five minutes later, before another penalty was kicked to the corner for a line out.  Tired thinking at the front of the line out allowed Llantwit a clean catch and a forward drive resulted in a try in the corner.  With the conversion hitting the post the half time score was 8-7 in favour of the home team.

The second half started with Rhys Lakin coming off the bench to replace Rowan Allcock and Chris Poole moving to the wing. Another early change introduced Luke Crockett into the front row with Sidford moving back to replace Roach.

Llantwit Major started the second half stronger and again good defence featuring Crimp, Lakin and deClaire stopped attacks.  The pressure told however and after concerted close range drives the ball was released to Jamie Lewis who scored under the posts.  The conversion made the score 15-7.

A deliberate knock-on three minutes later resulted in another three points from a kickable penalty.

Matters did not improve, when from the restart the Llantwit forwards drove into midfield.  Smith  cleverly managed to rip the ball free in the tackle but only straight into the arms of Simon Edbrooke who raced clear to score another converted try.

Jack Margetson and Gareth Clancy now entered the fray as replacements for Mackie and Hillman and Penarthians rallied with Crimp and Poole combining on a couple of occasions to carry the attack to the opposition but the pressure on the Old Pens scrummage limited the attacking opportunities for the threatening threequarters.


On 25 minutes, a final try was scored by Steve Godwin after Llantwit’s only free-flowing backline movement of the day saw him outpace both Sadler and Facey to score in the corner.  The conversion was wide and the score was 30-5

There were to be no more scores and Old Pens did create opportunities but were not quite clinical enough to take advantage on the scoresheet.

Next Saturday Old Penarthians visit Ynysowen in the WRU Bowl knock-out competition whilst the 2nd XV are at home to the newly reformed Penarth Athletic in a CADRU league fixture. Both games are scheduled to kick off at 2.30pm.


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