Bedwas cruise to Comfortable Win
Llandovery RFC 7 Bedwas RFC 25 Premier Division, Saturday 5 January 2008.
Report by Geoff Watkins, photographs by Ian Lovell.
The first match of 2008 and mid point of the season for Bedwas and the 13th match was lucky 13 as the Gwent Club cruised to a far more comfortable win than the scoreboard showed and in control from start to finish. Ninth in the table, the result helps consolidate a mid-table position, but more significantly opens up a significant gap between mid-table and bottom places. Principality Man of the Match was full back Jason Tovey with an all round performance and fifteen points.
Bedwas opened the scoring with a 4th minute penalty from Jason Tovey and stamped their territorial advantage immediately with powerful all round play, Tovey slotting his second penalty on 19 minutes.. When the Drovers fought back, long clearance kicks by outside half John Welch and centre Phil Dollman drove them back.
From loose play 40 metres out scrum half Simon Jones initiated a sweeping move, a superb midfield break by wing James Norris and Tovey raced away for a 25th minute corner try. Just 4 minutes later a complete defensive mix up allowed flanker Andrew Tibbatts to scoop up the ball and cross under the sticks. Jason Tovey converted to leave the Church Bank side 18-0 down on the half hour. With 5 minutes left Llandovery outside half Gareth James hacked the ball from inside his own half and kept kicking on but at the try line stumbled on the rolling ball and their only scoring chance of the half was lost. A half in which Bedwas established a monopoly on territory and possession, their front row of Gareth Leonard, Keiran Crawford and Kieron Jenkins having given their opponents a torrid time. Llandovery replaced their injured international prop Ben Broster after 35 minutes, but their game was often stati and lacking in both creativity and direction, Bedwas leading 18 –0 at half time.
Four minutes after the restart and fluent interpassing between forwards and back sent wing Matthew Pizey side stepping through for a fine combined try, Jason Tovey adding the extras. The Drovers began to make regular substitutions to get back into the game but clearly struggling. Bedwas replaced scrum Half Simon Jones with James Pizey and captain John Welch with Stuart Thomas who reverted to full back with Jason Tovey moving to outside half. Bedwas again surged forward but failed to cross for the elusive fourth, bonus point try. Bedwas made further changes bringing on Petrt Harrison for Keiran Crawford, John Tilley for Gareth Leonard and Sion Dafydd for Rhodri Edwards after 68 minutes. Llandovery made a final, spirited all-out effort, fighting their way to the visitors line. Bedwas brought on their two last substitutes, flanker Neil Lewis for Phil Sargent and prop Jon Slater for Keiron Jenkins but Llandovery gained their consolation score with an injury time try by full back Darren Daniel on loan by full back Darren Daniel on loan from the Scarlets, converted by sub prop Greg Cunliffe. Unfortunately an otherwise cleanly contested match exploded into a fracas at the very end and Bedwas hooker Harrison and Llandovery prop Cunliffe were yellow carded.
Next week Bedwas face much tougher opposition when Cross Keys visit the Bridgefield on Saturday 12 January 2008.
Bedwas coach Steve Law
‘Very pleased to play away and get a result and we did it in second gear, controlling the game throughout. A little disappointed that we did not got a bonus point try, and that we conceded an injury time try as we should have had more tries as we were clearly good enough’
Llandovery coach Iestyn Thomas
‘I was hugely disappointed with the Llandovery performance but in all fairness Bedwas have to be well satisfied with their fine overall team performance’
Llandovery Chairman Handel Davies
‘Bedwas were a very confident outfit with very physical forwards and backs which meant that, defensively, they were hard to break down, and overall out-muscled us. We did not play well and, on the day, Bedwas was probably the best side seen at Church Bank this season’
Jason Tovey, Matthew Pizey, Adam Hughes, Phil Dollman, Jimmy Morris, John Welch (Captain), Simon Jones, Gareth Leonard, Keiran Crawford, Keiron Jenkins, Craig Powell, Rhodri Edwards, Phil Sargent, Andrew Tibbatts, Brendan Lampitt.
SubstitutesJohn Tilley (Leonard 72 mins), Peter Harrison(Crawford 62 mins), Jon Salter (Jenkins 72 mins), Sion Dafydd, (Edwards 62 mins), Neil Lewis (Sargent 72 mins), James Pizey (Jones 59 mins), Stuart Thomas (Welch 62 mins).