Bedwas RFC 55 Tata Steel RFC 15
WRU Championship Plate, Saturday 09 October 2021.
Match report and photography by Ian Lovell.
Bedwas turned on the style to run in eight tries and complete an emphatic victory with debutant Aaron Billingham running in three tries on his twenty-first birthday.
Bedwas made a nervy start and went behind after only five minutes as Dafydd Watkins crossed for an unconverted try.
A Matty Bancroft penalty reduced the arrears after seven minutes before the visitors extended their lead via a Willis Wood penalty.
Bedwas upped the ante and the visitors hit the self-destruct button as referee Simon Mills sent two players to the sin bin following a series of penalties.
The additional numbers gave Bedwas an advantage they used to good effect and from a scrum the ball was quickly moved along the line for Billingham to notch his opening try. Bancroft’s conversion put Bedwas ahead for the first time.
A few minutes later Bedwas extended their lead as prop Rhys Hutcherson crashed over for a try again converted by Bancroft. Bedwas tails were up and almost immediately the lead was increased by a Bancroft try following a jinking run. Bancroft added the extras and with Bedwas beginning to hit their straps the visitors were probably relieved to hear the half time whistle.
Just two minutes into the second half and a sweeping Bedwas move saw Sam Davies cross for a try in the corner, this time unconverted.
It was all Bedwas at this stage and another try soon came as Billingham notched his second try out wide, Bancroft’s conversion kick hitting a post and bouncing safe.
Tata pulled a try back when a Bancroft cross field kick was picked off close to his own try line by Tata scrum half Alex Morris who ran the length of the field to claim a try by the posts. Fly half Cameron Bamford added the extras.
Bedwas were undeterred and shortly afterwards a determined run by lock forward Harry Oliver earned him his first try in Bedwas colours improved upon by Bancroft.
A weaving run by Bancroft set up a try for his half back partner Rory Harries with thirteen minutes to play, Bancroft again accurate with the boot.
Bedwas weren’t finished and with seconds left to play quick hands to spread the ball wide put Billingham in for his hat-trick try and complete a memorable debut. Bancroft’s conversion completed the rout.
Bedwas Head Coach Stefan Sankala was pleased with his side’s efforts. He said “We made a sluggish start but once we found our rhythm, I was pleased with the intensity we played at. What especially pleased me was the ruthless fashion in which we took our scoring chances, something that will do wonders for our confidence”
Next Saturday Bedwas continue to keep in the WRU Challenge Cup and travel to the Swansea Valley home of Trebanos RFC, kick off at 2-30pm.
Pictures from today’s game can be found at Bedwas RFC’s albums | Flickr