Cold on and off the field

by Mark Gould

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I can only say that complacency, backed with an inapt lack lustre performance was the down fall behind the result Saturday, no excuses we lost this game due to poor discipline and again aimless kicking. This performance was totally out of character of the performances in weeks gone by and no disrespect for Pentych but we beat much harder and more clinical teams in the 2 weeks after Christmas. The talk after was about the promotion chances lost, this is not the case its far from over with the top teams all having to play each other and travel to some nice places were results are difficult to come by. The bottom line is that we cannot afford to slip up anymore if we still want to progress.

The game Saturday started really well with Chris Lewis causing all sorts of problems with his hard running, this gave us a good platform to attack from unfortunately lack of composure and a good resilient defence stopped the 1st score from coming. With all the pressure coming from the Rocks it was a an interception by Tom Nolan that opened the scoring running in from 40 metres out, Gavin Cooper converting. The next chance came after a penalty being awarded to the Rocks 22 metres out and easy 3 points on offer, a brave but controversial call from the Captain was to go down the line and use the heavy pack to shunt over for the try. Unfortunately the throw was missed and the pressure relieved in a resulting questionable penalty being awarded to Pentyrch.

Then the moment the game changed after another hard run from Chris Lewis breaking the line eventually he was brought down with a good low tackle that caused him to twist his ankle and having to leave the field 15 minutes into the game This gave Pentyrch a much needed boost of confidence and the Rocks a bit of an early reshuffle with Rob Obrien entering the field. The loss of Chris Lewis seemed to set off a chain of penalties being conceded in key attacking positions. The penalties were not in kickable range but the left boot of the outside half was pain in its self we must have lost 40-50 yards every time we conceded. Eventually the indiscipline would hurt us after a strange kick into the corner the and a resulting penalty for what we still don’t know lead to a scrum then ruck and a yellow card for Rob Obrien who was penalized for not rolling away despite being trapped under the tackled player. Pentrych’s reward was a try in the corner after a miss tackle for the full back 7-7, five minutes later pentrych kicked a penalty 10-7.

The game stayed this way 20 in to the second half both sides struggling to find a break through, the much more accurate kicking game of Pentych was there best form of attack and it was from this there next score came after a turnover the scrum half somehow got the 2 tackles to crash over from 10 yards out kick missed 15-7. Now behind by 2 scores this seemed to spark a bit of life into the rocks, the first chance came after a good break by centre Bryn Evans who fed the ball through the line only for the last pass to be dropped into touch. The next chance came after a good build up from the forwards realised Dan French who feed the big Mike who charged into the 22 but to have the ball stripped off him. More chances came but poor execution and dropped ball just gave the ball back to Pentych to clear. Now momentum was with the us and with 15 minutes left I was confident that we would get our rewards.

The game was then quite rightly held up due to a bad injury to one of the Pentyrch lads who was eventually stretched off the pitch, this was the final nail for the Rocks as the 20 minute hold up was enough to slow everything down and take the momentum away, the only we could savage was 3 points from the bot of Dan French who had another solid game 15-10 game over a losing bonus point not really what we aimed for but it could be important in the run in. I would like to send best wishes to the lad who got injured and hopefully a quick return.

Next Saturday we play Rhiwbina at the Harlequins, no need to build this one up after the 55-8 hammering earlier in the season if the boys can’t get up for this quite honestly they shouldn’t be playing for the club. This game will be better fought than the last one, as the focus will be on a team performance rather than individual battles this time.

Other Division 3 South East Results

Tonyrefail 0 27 Brecon
Rhiwbina A A Nelson
Dowlais P P Penarth
Gwernyfed 18 23 Fairwater
Pentyrch 15 10 St Peters
Llanishen 33 22 Aberdare