Bedwas hold off late Ystalyfera surge to claim the spoils

Bedwas RFC 21 Ystalyfera RFC 15

WRU Admiral Championship, Saturday 22 January 2022.

Match report and photography by Ian Lovell.

 Bedwas survived a late Ystalyfera surge to hold on for victory in what was a keenly fought match.

The visitors dominated the set piece through the game but bizarrely had no answer to the Bedwas driving maul.

It was from a scrum penalty that Ystalyfera took the lead as outside half Gareth James slotted over a goal after ten minutes to put his side ahead.

Bedwas responded with a well worked driving maul but unfortunately Owen Jones dropped the ball as he crossed the try line, but no mistakes were made from a similar driving maul two minutes later. Permit signing Matt Dwyer was awarded the try. Dion McIntosh made no mistake with the conversion.

Midway through the half Ystalyfera’s Iestyn Scott’s long-range penalty fell just short of the posts before his centre colleague Tom Powell was sin-binned for an off the ball incident.

His absence didn’t seem to cause his fellow players too much hardship and although Gareth James missed a penalty chance shortly afterwards right-wing Luc Caines found space off the back of a scrum to cross for a try. Gareth James missed the conversion.

Bedwas fought hard to get back into the game and just before half time Lewis Bowden followed up a good run to run through unopposed for a try. Dion McIntosh’s conversion put Bedwas fourteen points to eight ahead as the refer blew for the interval.

A determined Bedwas came out for the second half looking to put the game to bed. Lewis Bowden emerged from a pile of bodies to claim his second try of the afternoon again converted by McIntosh to put his side fourteen points clear. Bedwas looked for the four tries bonus point but lost possession at key times and chances evaporated.

Late in the game a hack through and chase almost the length of the pitch saw the visitors come close to scoring but with the ball adjudged held up over the try line had to settle for a five-metre scrum. As had been the case all afternoon the home side’s scrum was struggling to cope, and it was no different on this occasion as the referee ruled Bedwas impinged one times too many and awarded a penalty try to the visitors.

To their credit Ystalyfera continued to put the home scrum under pressure. The loss of prop forward Ben Drew to the sin bin made life difficult for the home forwards. A series of scrums followed but the visitors were kept out from scoring a decisive try, the referee finally called a halt to proceedings after a lengthy period of stoppage time.

The Bedwas man of the match sponsored by Casa Mia Restaurant of Caerphilly was awarded to Rory Harries.

Next Saturday Bedwas make the short trip to Beddau RFC for a Championship game, kick-off 2-30pm.

Today’s match photos can be found at:https://www.flickr.com/photos/bedwasrfc/albums

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Ystalyfera 8 1 0 7 129 199 7
Beddau 9 1 0 8 90 252 5