For todays fixture we travelled to Abercwmboi for a 12 KO, a time which we are not used to kicking off at. From previous encounters we knew that our boys would be in for a tough game, a real test against one of the stronger sides we have played over the past few seasons. To put some perspective on the challenge facing our young team, Abercwmboi 11s have only lost twice this season both times against very strong 11’s teams. The abercwmboi squad also contains no less than 8 members of the Cynon Valley schools district squad.
With a fair size crowd having assembled Abercwmboi got the game underway immediately putting the visitors on the back foot only for Penalta to respond with some fine play of their own stringing together some fine phases of play. However, it was the home side who took the lead scoring in the far right hand corner. However, almost immediately Penallta responded with a fine worked try of their own with Joe crossing the line for the first of his Four tries of the day. Back came Abercwmboi with two well worked scores although both scores could have been stopped had the Penallta youngsters not switched off and lost their concentration at vital times. Joseph then went over for his second try of the game and probably the best try of the game with the Penallta boys going through numerous phases and expertly recycling and offloading ball with some really excellent handling between forwards and backs for Joe to crash over from short distance to get the last score of the half.
Half Time - Abercwmboi 20 - Penallta 10
The start of the second half was more or less a carbon copy of the first half with the home side getting an early score to open up a 15 point lead. What then followed was a brand of rugby not seen from this group of players for a long time. With Matt marshalling the backs like a seasoned pro and frightening the life of the opposition with his elusive running and the forwards dominating the breakdown area the Penallta boys showed the visiting crowd just how good a team they can be when they are all up for it. In defence the tackling was absolutely superb with the home sides attacks being brought to a halt time and again, with the fast improving Griff diving on any loose ball. Joe, having another great game today and not giving the ref any lip added a further two scores to bring Penallta within one score of the home side. By this time the penallta boys were firmly on top going through countless phases and retaining possession for long periods of play, Aber were now living on scraps of ball having no option but to kick ball away from their own try line on a number of occasions just to relieve the pressure. From a tap penalty Josh managed to crash through the home defence to bring the scores level and then two minutes later crashed over again to put the Penallta boys in front for the first time in the game. Keiran, on as a second half sub due to a prior engagement scored Pen’s 7th try of the game with just 5 minutes remaining. Abercwmboi were not finished yet though and went over for their 6th try of the game to make the last couple of minutes a slightly nervous affair for the visitors. Penallta managed to see out the final few minutes in a fairly comfortable fashion with Matt finally ending the game by booting the ball into touch.
Final Score - Abercwmboi 11s 30 - Penallta 11s 35
I have to be honest here and say that both sets of players played their part in providing the watching crowd with one hell of a fine game of rugby. High quality, very competitive and played in the right spirits of the game. Excellent game of rugby boys, well done to both sets of players.
From a Penallta point of view, WOW, what a game, what a performance, what a comeback. Absolutely superb game of rugby with excellent performances from all players who took to the field today. Tackling, passing, rucking, brilliant!!
Man of the Match for todays game goes to one of the newer boys in the squad - Danny. Very strong performance, someone who doesn’t miss training and has come a long way in such a short space of time - Well Done. Yet again though, there were lots of boys today whom could easily have had MOM award such was the excellent performance from all of you.
The challenge now is can you repeat that type of performance in the next game? There is no reason why you cannot!