Aberystwyth RFC | 1st Team 19 - 15 Crymych RFC | 1st Team
Ifan Rees Phillips
1 Conversion
1 Penalty
Laurence Headlam
1 Try
Osian Davies
1 Try

Match Report
16 September 2018 / Team News

Aberystwyth battle to see off Preseli men

ABERYSTWYTH scraped home late in the game to win an exciting contest 19-15 against a young but skilful Crymych side.

As in the previous week’s game, Aber put themselves under unnecessary pressure by starting slowly and having to play catch-up rugby for much of the game.

Crymych kicked off and went on the offensive immediately. After putting the home side under a lot of pressure they were awarded a penalty five metres from the home try line.

Choosing a scrum, their big pack put in a mighty shove to push Aber’s eight over their line for No 8 Osian Davies to score the opening try. Ifan Phillips added the conversion to put Crymych 0-7 ahead after as many minutes.

The visitors’ pressure and ball retention continued, but Aber’s tackling was a lot better than it had been the previous week when they had gone down 31-17 at Llangennech.

A counter attack with Lee Gower, Llyr Thomas and Bryn Shepherd prominent took Aber upfield and they came very close to scoring their opening try from a five metre lineout. But Crymych defended well and they launched a counter attack to ease the pressure on their line.

The visitors’ next try came from Aber’s lack of concentration and lack of width across the field. After winning a scrum 40m out, No 10 Phillips, noticing the absence of any cover on Aber’s wing, put in an excellent diagonal kick which No11 Laurence Headlam caught to race over untouched to score his team’s second try.

Phillips missed the conversion, but his team’s tails were up with a 12 point lead.

For the second week running Aber had been exposed and punished for their failure to defend across the whole width of the field. Midway through the first half, however, the hosts stepped up a gear.

Accurate interpassing and quick, effective rucking took them upfield where No10 Steff Rees found full-back Matthew Hughes on the burst near the touchline.

He went over for Aber’s first try, much to the relief of his team and their supporters. The difficult conversion was missed, but at 5-12 Aber were back in the game.

Aber maintained this momentum and the back row of Dan Binks, Lee Gower and Tom ‘Kenko’ Evans harassed and pressured the visitors, tying up a number of Crymych tacklers each time they carried the ball forward.

This allowed the backs, with Carwyn Evans prominent, to have more room to attack. It also allowed room for Aber’s impressive new scrum-half, Dylan Morgan, to sneak over to score near the posts. Rees converted and at half-time Aber were level at 12-12.

Both sides started the second half full of fierce determination. For Aber, good individual breaks, especially by Arwel Lloyd and Carwyn Evans, should have brought better results, but poor handling and slow support for the ball carriers spoilt these opportunities

Crymych’s tackling and general defending also thwarted many of the home side’s promising breaks.

It was from a counter attack that Crymych were awarded a penalty 25m from the Aber line. As it seemed that the next side to score would win the game, they opted to take a kick at goal. Phillips’ fine kick hit the upright before going over to regain the lead for the visitors at 12-15.

Aber sensed that they had only a few minutes to win the game and they fought hard to regain possession from their kick-off. They succeeded, however, and launched wave after wave of attacks with Paul Stubbs and Arwel Lloyd prominent.

After the forwards had failed to break through, the ball was passed to the backs for Ian Ellis to use his speed and guile to go over for a brilliant winning try. Steff Rees put over an excellent conversion, and everyone breathed a sigh of relief as the scoring closed at 19-15.


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