LLANELLI RFC 12 BEDWAS RFC 13. Match report by Julian Farmer
Friday 14th March 2008
A dank, dour, misty night at Stradey Park greeted a Bedwas side that felt that their performance the week before away to Pontypridd had not been rewarded with the win they deserved going down 9-6. So it was no surprise that this game became a very physical encounter from the start with forward play dominating and some abrasive hard hitting tactics employed to try to gain dominance with a point to prove evident.
The physicality early on worked against Bedwas with wing Matthew Pizey going off with a suspected broken bone in his hand replaced by Nathan Hill after 8 minutes and soon after Phil Dollman with a knee injury after 14 minutes replaced by Andrew James. Ceiron Thomas kicked a penalty early on to give the home side the lead but this was cancelled out by a Stuart Thomas penalty from far out to restore parity after 17 minutes. A further penalty from Llanelli gave a slender lead to Llanelli on the half hour but this was nullified by a try right on the stroke of half time from Bedwas.
Llanelli will rue the chances they had in the first half after a missed tackle allowed them the opportunity to break the Bedwas defence but a pass knocked on close to the line ruined the chance for what appeared to be a certain try. Then fortunately for Bedwas, a penalty to the right of the posts was kicked to touch for a line out that Llanelli lost and the chance was gone for them to extend their lead when they were 6-3 up, only the Llanelli Captain will know why the decision was taken as this would have given his side a cushion towards the end of the half, the mistake was punished by Robert Downes after the Bedwas pack, now in total control after the early exchanges, drove Llanelli back on their own line Downes going over to score a much needed and deserved try which Stuart Thomas converted. All coming from the phases of play that saw Llanelli throw away a certain 3 points.
Half Time Llanelli 6 Bedwas 10
The second half was a more lacklustre error strewn affair with the Bedwas pack again in control and most of the play confined to forward dominance. A Stuart Thomas penalty gave Bedwas a cushion after 52 minutes but this was pegged back by Ceiron Thomas’ penalties on 55 minutes and 79 minutes. Bedwas should have been further clear when Stuart Thomas went over in the corner for an apparent try but this was inexplicably disallowed by the referee. No matter though, as replacements came on to try and change the tempo, Llanelli using all 7 replacements, this still could not change the flow of the game with Bedwas in control, a Stuart Thomas missed dropped goal 4 minutes into injury time could have added to the points victory but at 12 – 13 Bedwas came away with a deserved win for what could turn out to be their final trip to Stradey before the new stadium is built.
Bedwas Director of Rugby – Steve Law
‘Happy Days, It’s an ugly win, but to come to Stradey and come away with a result and the double over them this season is pleasing, everyone involved in Bedwas RFC, supporters, committee, players, officials and the village – if they showed more interest, should be rightly proud’
Try: Robert Downes (1)
Penalty: Stuart Thomas (2)
Conversions: Stuart Thomas (1)