Pariyo hat-Trick sees Wanderers home
Mountain Ash 17
“The win probably should have been a little more comfortable from the possession and territory we had but the Old firm were tenacious and spirited and kept playing for the full 80 mins. They posed us plenty of problems” Commented Manager John Lyons.
On a bright, cold sunny afternoon at the Memorial Ground the players were greeted to a slightly heavy pitch after the weeks snow but credit to Steve and John Baker and some late line clearing by CDB and ARH the surface was clear and in good nick for the afternoon’s match. The early exchanges were a little tentative as both sets of players warmed up and there was plenty of aerial tennis on show. The home side started to gain the ascendancy and with the set piece of both scrum and lineout solid they posed some early questions for the “Old Firm”. From good field position the forwards drove well and established a foothold in the Mountain Ash 22 but the visitor’s defence was solid and the home side were guilty of a little “white line fever” in their efforts to get the scoreboard moving. Eventually the stalemate was broken. Ioan Lewis, on debut, set Dan Apsee away from a free kick and after recycling the ball Will Adams Jones took the play deep into the visitors 22. This time the ball was moved well and out to Phil Pariyo who ended his drought of late by crossing for the first try. Luke fish converted 7-0. Mountain Ash then started to warm to their task but they found the home side defence equally resolute. A penalty gave the Wanderers decent field position again and they soon doubled their score. An Old firm scrum was pushed off the ball and Rob Brookson drove at the heart of the defence. The ball was recycled and Pariyo, having realised what it was like to score again, entered the line and forced his way over for the second try of the game. Fish converted 14-0. At this point it seemed that the home side would run away with proceedings but as Mountain Ash showed earlier this season they are no pushover. They started to string the phases together and put the Wanderers on the back foot. A penalty reduced the arrears to 14-3 and with their tails up they looked a far better side. The home side conceded a series of penalties under the pressure and as the half entered its final minutes the play was all with the visitors. From a scrum deep in Wanderers territory they moved the ball well and after several drives they crossed for their first try of the game to send the sides into the break with the home side narrowly ahead 14-10.
Any nerves the Wanderers faithful had at the break were eased at the start of the second half. A ruck infringement gave them good field position and after a good forward drive from the lineout the ball was set up for Josh Male. He went close and when the ball was moved for a second time Rob Evans, back from his 2 week holiday in Bridgend, crossed in the corner 19-10. The home side started to ring the changes with Michael Owen entering the fray. The game got a little bogged down in the heavy conditions as both sides found little continuity in their play. More subs arrived for the Wanderers and the fresh legs added a little impetus. From a good driving lineout Brooks capped off a good display when he broke clear of the advancing maul to cross for the bonus point try. Callum Bricknell, on as a sub, landed the conversion 26-10. The game ebbed and flowed as the visitors gave as good as they got and the home side could not really add the score that would make the game safe. The Old firm picked up their tempo, quite happy to run from deep and take quick tap penalties when the chance arose. Unfortunately handling errors and solid home side defence kept them at bay. A rare piece of attacking play from the Wanderers saw Adams Jones go close but as had happened many times before nothing came of the chance. The final nail in the coffin for the visitors came from a catalogue of errors. The Wanderers went on the attack but throwing wild long passes they were caught deep in the Mountain Ash 22. The visitors took a quick penalty but having broken clear of the 22 they spilled the ball. The home side then hacked the ball on and Pariyo used his pace to regather the ball and dive over in the corner for his third and the Wanderers fifth try of the game 31-0. Despite the loss of the game the visitors continued to battle and they ended the game strongly. Wave after wave of attacks put the home side under pressure and the Old firm were rewarded for their efforts with their second try of the game to make it 31-17. The final minutes of the game were lit up by the sight of a prop, Rob Lewis, on the hoof charging downfield. Unfortunately none of the Wanderers backs had the pace to keep up with him and the chance went begging. The final whistle saw the Wanderers settle for another bonus point win that keeps them ahead of the chasing Rhiwbina for the time being. Final score 31-17.
Tries: Phil Pariyo (3), Rob Evans, Rob Brookson
Cons: Luke Fish (2), Callum Bricknell
Wanderers Management Man of the Match: Rob Brookson
Wanderers Massiv Man of the match: Phil Pariyo