April 20, 2014, 11:51:44 AM by HonSec
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”PROUD” PENLAN BEAT THE CHAMPIONS
Penlan proved dominant > picture from Colin Rush
In their first league game against Ystalyfera last Christmas Penlan were away and lost by 26 to 5. They had played while missing some regular players and the result reflected their shortages. In their website match report Ystalyfera had commented :-
“Penlan are one of the ‘younger’ sides in the league and are not used to losing in a comprehensive fashion. They were proud, loud and in the event not allowed to gain any advantage and no doubt will learn something from this experience today.”
In their return game it is fair to say that it was Ystalyfera who had some learning to do. Riding high as already crowned champions of Division 3 South West they came to Mynydd Newydd as unbeaten in their first 19 league games.
From the off, as referee Mr. Simon Rees from Ebbw Vale got the game under way with Penlan taking the kick, the Fera went all out to dominate and intimidate. Some nasty injuries came Penlan’s way with outside-half Steven Williams being singled out and having to leave the field in the early stages with a bad eye injury. By this time though Fera had established a 5 minute lead with 7 points with a dodging sprint around the Penlan defence to land a try between the posts: they converted without difficulty.
To their credit Penlan concentrated on their game despite the aggression and showed that their forwards were well up to the task of holding the Fera pack. At 12 minutes Penlan won their lineout near the Fera 22 and made a determined push for the line. The visitors were pushed straight back over their goal until second row Daniel Richards, on permit from Waunarlwydd RFC, safely grounded a fine try. Scott Davies now at outside-half made a fine conversion to equal the score at 7 all.
Daniel Richards manages to land a first Penlan try > picture from Mike Evans
Ystalyfera were feeling the strain with Penlan looking the sharper side and their efforts paid dividends again at about 30 minutes from a scrum on the half way. Scrum-half Bobby Scrine won the ball and advanced through the defence deep into Fera territory until he made a quick off-load to Stuart James on the wing. Stuart made a superb sprint up the line to cross near the corner flag and give Penlan a 12 – 7 lead.
Stuart James lands his great try > picture from Mike Evans
In the final minutes of the first half Penlan took the safe option of 3 penalty points from the visitors 22 with a class kick from Scott Davies to give Penlan the 15 – 7 lead at half time.
Advice was forthcoming from coaches Lee Banfield and Mark Glover at the half break but really all Penlan needed to do was to continue their fine well drilled performance.
In the second half the exciting game continued until at 25 minutes Fera managed to reduce the Penlan lead with a try near the posts following constant pressure that led to them managing to dodge through the Penlan defence. A safe conversion made it a slim 15 – 14 Penlan lead.
At 35 minutes a penalty kick for Fera failed when the ball hit the posts and the danger that Penlan had been under spurred them into extra effort. As the final whistle approached Penlan’s fitness and skill were putting the visitors under great pressure. Penlan were awarded a penalty which led to flanker Adam Glover making a great burst through the startled defence to near the line and make a quick off-load to Captain Bobby Scrine in support who sprinted over for a well executed try.
No stopping Bobby Scrine as he lands Penlan try 3 > picture from Mike Evans
Adam was making his welcome return after a few weeks absence and showed that he had lost none of his pace in the meantime. A safe conversion from Scott Davies finally set the seal on the game and give Ystalyfera their first league defeat of the season, even depriving them of a losing score bonus. Possibly they will have been able to have learnt something from their experience at Mynydd Newydd.
Penlan Man of the Match for the fifth time this season was No. 8 Ian Scrine for his inspiring and constant contribution throughout the game.
It was a fine and resounding win for Penlan who had demonstrated the better rugby and their resolve to concentrate on their game despite distraction. I don’t know about loud but yes they were definitely proud and deservedly so. To their credit Ystalyfera weathered the defeat well and enjoyed the hospitality of the clubhouse after the game to drown their sorrows.
Thanks to our photographers, Colin Rush and Mike Evans – Colin’s have been uploaded to our gallery and Mike’s will be added to his website www.mike322.com
Penlan remain in fourth place with Maesteg Celtic and Brynamman in second and third having their own secure wins on Saturday. With just one point between them the race is still on for which will emerge as runner-up to secure a play off to decide a promotion place. Maesteg Celtic though have now completed all their 22 games and Brynamman have one left, away to Glyncorrwg. Brynamman need that win on 3rd. May to give them a promotion play-off chance. Penlan still have 2 games left, Glyncorrwg home next Saturday then Morriston away on 3rd. May.
All Division 3 South West results are presently reported as :-
Brynamman 46 Bryncoch 7
Maesteg Celtic 48 Neath Athletic 7
Pencoed 10 Glyncorrwg 13
Penlan 22 Ystalyfera 14
Resolven 34 Morriston 36
Taibach 26 Pontycymmer 36