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Pontypridd 25 v RGC 20 - match report

2 weeks ago By Gary Williams

Following report kindly supplied by RGC News.

RGC left Sardis Road with a late losing Bonus Point, but were punished by Pontypridd taking full advantage of 2 yellow cards. Danny Cross was sin-binned in the 38th minute and Ponty racked up 14 unanswered points with the extra man.

The opening gambit was a frantic affair with both sides looking for quick ball but the handling was letting them down at times. Attacks were stopped by knock ons or forwards passes.

Diggy Bird was using the boot well for the home side, looking to test RGC with some high balls and it was the fly-half that opened the scoring with a penalty.

In the visitor’s first real spell with the ball they worked the phases and moved the ball wide before Tiaan Loots broke a tackle to offload to Rhys Williams for the winger to score. Botica missed the conversion.

Pontypool then took the game to RGC and centre Gary Williams made a couple of powerful runs to the delight of the Sardis Road crowd. The scrum was also making an impact for Ponty as with a couple of big drives.

Harri Evans made a break down the wing and that was the begging of another good move from RGC, with Schwarz controlling the ball to keep it going wide. Dion Jones crossed the line after a strong handoff. Botica’s kick rebounded off the upright.

The final 10 minutes of the half were all in Pontypridd’s favour, and when Bird collected a kick the 2 on 1 was on and Dale Stuckey took the pass to score.

Errors from both sides led to a breath taking few minutes when Tim Grey grabbed the ball from a Pontypridd roundabout before making a run, his bass was intercepted and Jamie Hill kicked the ball ahead before being collected by a scrambling Alex Schwarz defence
Cross, who was on for Dion Jones, was adjudged to have made a late tackle and he was given a yellow. Minutes later the home side went for the big drive and got over with Ian George scoring. Bird added the extras. Ponty were winning the breakdowns and making some important turnovers at key times as half-time approached which was hampering any RGC attack.

The lead was extended to 12 points after the break when the home side worked the ball forwards and Rhys Shallard claimed the score. The boot of Bird was on form with the conversion.

Botica hit a penalty over the posts to get RGC back on the scoreboard, and Harri Evans sparked some life into the RGC attack with a blistering run before being put into touch.
The home side then picked up another 3 points when Bird kicked a penalty, which came after he missed a kick minutes earlier.

As the game went on RGC were being punished at the breakdown and the infringements were building, and the South Wales were having more off the ball and territory. Scrum half Jamie Hill was posing a threat with number of breaks from the back of his pack.

RGC found themselves down to 14 men again on 65 minutes when Iolo Evans was sent to the stands after an incident after a tackle, which got the Sardis Road crowd going again.
Even with 14 men RGC did manage to cross the line through Efan Jones but the set up pass from Tom Hughes was forward.

The became loose, as RGC looked for that try scoring pass but in occasion seemed to force the ball too soon. Jordan Scott made a couple of runs with ball in hand as he thundered through the tackles.

RGC did cross the line in the 84th minute with a Tm Grey try followed by a Botica conversion which led to a nervous few minutes for the Sardis Road crowd. RGC attempted to keep the ball alive and get back up the field but the game ended after a Loots knock on.

After 2 away games in 6 games and 780 miles on the road, RGC will be glad of a home game vs Bedwas next week.

Updated 13:00 - 8 Apr 2018 by Gary Williams

Where next?

Llandudno 27 v Caernarfon 10 - match report Following report kindly supplied by Caernarfon RFC.
Ruthin 10 v Bala 16 - match report Following report kindly supplied by Ruthin RFC.

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