17 September 2019 / Team News

Hard fought victory in local derby

The sun was shining brightly on the Welfare for our first home league game of the season and a good crowd were gathering in anticipation of a hard game in this local derby as we entertained neighbours Blackwood RFC.

The selectors had made some changes  from the previous games with Harry replacing  Jack, Luke Hughes and Holvey changing places  and Dan Morgan returning to the starting line up with Butch unavailable In the backs Prez started in place of Huish whilst Ethan returned to the centre with Revs replacing last weeks pairing of Jamsey and Browne. Jambo on the wing being the final change. All in all, six changes from the previous week.

After kicking off it was the home side on the attack and an early opportunity for a kick at goal saw Jezza hit the upright with his first penalty attempt after 3 minutes. From the relieving kick it gave Blackwood a change to get a foot hole inside our half and after 8 minutes their 10 was successful with his first penalty to give the visitors a 3-0 lead. This was turning into a typical derby with neither side able to break the others defence and the game was played mainly in the areas between the two 22metre lines. Although there were penalty infringements they were not within range until Pross was penalised 5 metres out and on the half hour Blackwood doubled their lead with Turners second penalty. The dds then put pressure on the Blackwood defence as they were now getting the better of the bigger Blackwood forwards and after several drives the ball found itself in Jezzas hands about 22metres out. Broken play is when he’s at his most difficult to defend and after going right, then left , then right again he turns around in two circular movements travelling a full ten metres forward before a Blackwood defender managed to grab his shirt. Little he maybe but he kept pumping his legs and dragged the defender along unwilling to let his shirt go. Finally falling short of the line, he popped the ball up to the supporting Pross who drove over the line to open our scoring account and grabbing our first try of the season.  Jezza stuck the conversion between the sticks and we went in 7-6 up at Half time.

Almost straight from the kick-off we were penalised on our 10-metre line and Turner succeeded with his 3rd penalty and the lead changed hands and we were down 7 -9. The game ebbed and flowed with neither side getting dominance for any time. Jezza restored our lead with 2 penalties giving us a lead of 13-9 but with 20 minutes to go there was still life in both sides. Both sides had opportunities to score further but big tackles were winning the day and boys from both sides no doubt felt the bumps come Sunday morning.  Final score 13-9

Everyone will have different opinions on decisions made by the referee but nobody can change them on the field or afterwards Saturdays referee  was being assessed by the WRU assessor on the day and will have been told his good or bad points by him and it was not a pretty site seeing him being questioned on his performance before he’d got off the field.  Lucky for us it was not players, supporters or management of our club and hopefully this will continue. If anyone feels strongly enough about something the match officials done can we please ask that they hold that thought and question match officials in the club afterwards in a civilised manner.

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