Bedwas RFC 18 Pontypridd RFC 30
Principality Welsh Premiership, Wednesday 29 December 2010.
Match report by John Meredith, photography by Ian Lovell.
Bedwas took on top of the table Pontypridd in a re-arranged fixture that had originally been scheduled for Monday 27 December.
Both sides had barely played in the last month, the heavy snows bringing about an enforced break, and this meant that both sides were likely to be ‘ring rusty’.
The game started in a thick fog hindering the visibility of the large holiday crowd.
Bedwas took the lead after 6 minutes courtesy of a 40 metre penalty goal courtesy of Stuart Thomas, levelled 10 minutes later courtesy of a Humberstone penalty after Bedwas were adjudged offside in front of the posts.
Five minutes later Bedwas were penalised for joining a ruck from the side and once again Humberstone found the target.
After 27 minutes a mistake by Jamie Jones led to Ponty winger Owen Williams galloping away down the wing for a try out wide. Humberstone added the extras.
Bedwas tried to fight back but were denied any ball and go forward momentum.
After 35minutes Ponty scrum half Kristian Baller found himself sin binned and Bedwas launched an assault on the visitors try line but could not breach the defence. Stuart Thomas confidently stroked home another penalty to reduce the deficit before visiting outside half Humberstone was sin binned for bringing down an airborne player deep into injury time. Thomas added the penalty and the whistle blew for half time with Bedwas 13-9 down.
Bedwas came out for the second half looking to take the game to their opponents. A further Thomas penalty five minutes into the half reduced the Ponty lead to a single point. Replacement Gunter had a chance to restore his sides lead but his shot at goal hit a post. Bedwas took the lead following a further Stuart Thomas kick from an acute angle after Pontypridd we penalised at a ruck, before Gunter found his range again to successfully add a penalty goal.
Stuart Thomas broke from defence and Bedwas rued a missed opportunity as his pass to Lampitt went to ground with the try line in sight.
Thomas then added a penalty to put his side 18-16 ahead with eight minutes left to play.
Ponty upped the ante and good interplay by their backs saw Lewis Jones cross just wide of the sticks and Gunter had no problem adding the extras to put his side 23-16 ahead.
Ponty were in no mood to relinquish their lead which saw Owen Williams add his second try of the evening out wide, converted by Gunter for an unassailable 30-18 lead. Bedwas fought hard to get a try to reduce the deficit to within 7 points for a losing bonus point but were beaten by the clock and disappointingly came out of the contest with nothing to show for their efforts.
Bedwas Man of the Match
Stuart Thomas kicked six penalties and made some good breaks in a fine all round performance. Special mention to the Bedwas pack for fronting up, putting bodies on the line to nullify the visiting forwards