Newbridge 66 Beddau 12
Swalec Division One East
Match Report by Lynn West
If Beddau were hoping to use this fixture to increase competition for places in the upcoming Mid District Cup semi-final their plans were blown significantly off course by a rampant Newbridge who had scored three tries by the 12th minute of an uneven contest. From the start a sweeping attack was halted only by a Beddau hand knocking the ball away. It was regathered but the subsequent pass went to ground and Newbridge were awarded the scrum. Outside half Neil Burnett dummied and centre Bevan Howells strode through for the easiest of scores. Burnett converted.
When Newbridge again opened up speedy right wing Gareth Jones found himself in enough space to easily outflank the defence for Burnett to again add the points. A dropped pass in the Beddau 22 resulted in Gareth Jones seeing the way to the line opened again and he duly scored. There was a slight renaissance from Beddau but Neil Burnett spotted an opportunity to float a kick to the right and Gareth Jones scooted in for his third try with Burnett's conversion taking the score to 26-0.
Bevan Howells scored again when he and Burnett exchanged passes and when a move broke down the bouncing ball was gathered by lock Geraint Thomas who was as surprised as anybody to see that the seas had departed and there was a simple try to be had. Burnett converted both and it was now 40-0.
Rhys Watkins had made a brief appearance as a blood replacement and in that time had produced the kind of determined tackling that seemed to re-energise some of his colleagues. Whatever the reason we suddenly saw Beddau begin to take an interest in proceedings. A period of sustained pressure brought its reward when number 8 Glen Slater reached the line with Garan Pearce drop kicking the conversion. Newbridge had the final say of the half when Geraint Thomas was again on the scoreboard though only after a forward pass of epic proportions.
Beddau had much more of the play in the second half and when full back Ceri Young swept in after Neil Burnett had opened the defence it was a little against the current run of play. It was then Beddau's turn to benefit from the latitude the referee was allowing as the pass to Dan Fox in midfield was clearly forward but nothing could detract from the neat way young winger Keiron Thomas marked his debut with a try.
With time running out Newbridge fashioned a very good score for Sean Thomas as the ball was kept in play through numerous phases before the breach was made. Right at the end a final try came in dubious circumstances. Robert Jones stood up a Newbridge player in the tackle and wrestled the ball away. Illegally in the referee's view. The tap and go penalty presented Mark Curtis with an inviting score.