Cefn Coed RFC | 1st Team 10 - 3 Old Penarthians RFC | 1st Team
Thomas Rhys Goodfellow
1 Penalty

Match Report
02 February 2022 / Team News

Old Penarthians v Cefn Coed Match Report

After two wins in a row Old Penarthians travelled to winless Cefn Coed in their latest WRU Division South East Central (B) fixture with a degree of confidence.  That optimism was however dashed within 12 minutes when Cefn Coed raced to a ten point lead and Old Penarthians despite all their efforts could only counter with a penalty for a final score of 10-3 to the home team.

This was a game that with the players in the right frame of mind was a contest that should have been won but it was the home team that were far more focused and verbally motivated.  In contrast the Old Penarthians were not sufficiently coordinated and committed as a team trying to rely on individuals to create opportunities.

There were too many handling errors and penalties conceded, particularly at the breakdown that emphasised the lack of cohesion and after the match coach Jake Thomas quite rightly asked the players to show more desire when the team come together for their next fixture in mid-February after the first two rounds of the 2022 Six Nations tournament.

There were possible mitigating circumstances with the game played on a very heavy, boggy pitch which did not suit the threequarter focused Old Pens attacking options.  Added to that there were selectorial changes that saw AJ Jones and Ryan Davenport introduced to the starting line up in the forwards with Rhys Thomas asked to play in the second row.

Thomas to his credit gave another display of outstanding tackling that certainly made up for his lack of height and weight in the role of a modern second row.

The game was also played at a very slow pace with Cefn Coed players continually requiring injury treatments, particularly in the second half, which meant that any momentum gained by Old Penarthians was interrupted.

However, the result went in favour of the home team because they started the better.  They dominated the first three minutes and when a penalty was awarded in from of the posts Rhys Bowe stepped up and slotted the three points from 30m.

On eight minutes Old Pens launched their first serious attack when Rhys Lakin burst through the defence and deftly kicked to the corner.  The resulting lineout was however lost forward and from the scrum Cefn Coed shunted the Penarthians forwards backwards.

Pressure was maintained but on 15 minutes a lineout won by Thomas was not correctly controlled by the forwards allowing Cefn Coed to steal the ball and gain territory from which Ian Hassett scored.  Bowe added the conversion and Cefn’s lead was 10-0

Cefn Coed rarely attacked through their threequarters and had defined tactics of kicking deep into Old Pens territory using the favourable wind conditions.  It meant that all the Old Pens attacks had to come from deep and on one of those runs from Chris Poole, Evan Morgan nearly evaded the cover defence but his inside pass was knocked-on.

They did however continue the attack from good carries by Joel deClaire and Louis Chandler (making a welcome return from a fractured cheekbone and eye-socket) and with three minutes to the half time interval were awarded a penalty kick that Rhys Goodfellow converted.

The second half start was typical of the game when the Cefn Coed kick-off was not claimed by a Penarthian player and a Cefn forward caught the ball in mid air and charged forward. His support was good and the only way to stop the move was by conceding a penalty in front of the posts.  Inconceivably the Cefn Coed kicker missed the easy shot at goal and in the process injured himself.

That meant that when another penalty was conceded by Old Pens two minutes later in a position equally as kickable a second player stepped up but he too was unsuccessful.

This did galvanise the visitors and they played some of the better rugby for the rest of the match but despite territorial advantage opportunities could not be capitalised upon.  Poole again broke out of defence and raced 40m only to be held up just short of the tryline. Lakin and Morgan also had runs but they were too no avail and fullback Goodfellow often fielded the high ball well and counterattacked.

That momentum was stifled by the Cefn Coed delay tactics and when the last opportunities came from try line pressure the forwards charged forward to no avail when a more intuitive option would have been to use the more elusive threequarters.

It was therefore a despondent set of players and supporters who travelled back to Penarth after a 10-3 defeat.


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