Tonyrefail RFC | 1st Team 31 - 10 Old Penarthians RFC | 1st Team
Rory Hone
1 Try
Liam Brooks
1 Try

Match Report
29 January 2024 / Team News

Old Penarthians v Tonyrefail Match Report

After the defeat to Pontycymer the previous week a trip to second placed Tonyrefail for an injury depleted Old Penarthians 1st XV was not an ideal match.  However, the performance of the team in the away Division 4 East Central league fixture showed the team’s resilience despite a final scoreline of 31-10 in favour of the hosts.

It was an afternoon that showed that there is not much of a gulf between the teams and it is only self-belief and a little more composure that separates the winners from the losers. It was also an afternoon in which both sides played attacking rugby but it was the home team that eventually dominated through good organisation in their forwards who scored two late second half tries to put the result beyond the visitors.

That forward organisation was actually obvious from the fourth minute when Tonyrefail captain Owain Davies scored the opening try  from a lineout drive but it was from open play that Old Penarthians responded five minutes later.  A breakout from their own half saw Ieuan Harris take a pass from Jake Thomas and give Alex Lewis a chance to sprint along his wing.  An inside pass back to Harris and Old Pens were inside the opposition 22. 

Support from the forwards saw Tom Sidford and Joel deClaire release the threequarters and with the Tonyrefail defence failing to recover Rory Hone broke a tackle to score.  Unfortunately, Rhys Morgan, playing on permit from Penarth RFC, was just wide with the conversion but the scores were level.

It was Tonyrefail who scored next from another forward effort through Steve Driscoll.  This time Jordan Jones was successful with the conversion and the score was 12-5.  It could have been worse three minutes later except for a great cover tackle by Harris that saw the attacker pass the ball forward in contact.

Tonyrefail continued the pressure and only good defence from deClaire, Josh Allcock and Rhys Thomas thwarted the attacks. Scrums were also solid, and the front row of Liam Brooks, James Reynolds and Sidford did not allow Tonyrefail an easy platform to launch attacks.

It was however a sweeping move across the pitch from right to left, aided by some poor tackling, which allowed Tonyrefail to score their third try through Dafydd Rees.  Jones converted for a 19-5 lead just before half time.  During the attack Gareth Clancy was injured and Henry Kynaston, who had already made two outstanding open field tackles as a winger, stepped in to play scrum half allowing Tom McCarthy, son of former 1st XV centre Paul, to make his debut.

The second half started with Charlie Wheatley, Sidford, Jake Thomas and Reynolds carrying the ball into contact and recycling the ball for a continuation of the movements with Morgan orchestrating the forward progress from outside half. Even when attacks broke down the cover provided by Harris and McCarthy from kicks out of defence by Tonyrefail was sound and on one occasion led to a recovery kick from Harris of a 50-22 earning Old Pens an attacking lineout.

This encouraging play kept Old Penarthians on top for the first 20 minutes of the half but a score that their territory warranted would not come until an attacking lineout was won cleanly by Allcock and the forwards drove over the line for Brooks to appear with the ball and a well deserved try.  The conversion was again unsuccessful.

This was however to be the last opportunity to score for Old Pens as Tonyrefail fought back through their forwards. This led to repeat infringements by the visitors affording Tonyrefail territory and momentum and eventually tries on 30 and 35 minutes, both scored by flanker Ryan Owens. Jones converting one  for a 31-10 victory.

The last few minutes of the match were played without Sidford who was yellow carded, but with substitutes, Mark Smart, Dan Jones, Max Chandler and Jon deClaire given an opportunity for some limited game-time

The next Od Penarthians league fixture will not be until 17th February when they host Caerau Ely, as in the intervening period the first two rounds of the 2024 Six Nations tournament  take centre stage


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