Wanderers flanker Lee Highgate.
Photographer: Alyn Humphreys
Glamorgan Wanderers 6
On a cold dry evening at the memorial ground Swansea began brightly at real pace combining waves of attacks with forwards and backs taking the game to the Wanderers. The home side could not get their hands on the ball as drive after drive threatened the Wanderers line. After 3 minutes a penalty chance was declined and the kick to the corner gave the visitors a chance at the first score. Swansea took the play infield and the forwards drove for the line. The Wanderers defence held firm but Mark Popham broke free from the maul and crashed over. The first of numerous kicks was missed but the All Whites lead 0-5. The visitors continued to dominate as the home side found it difficult to get their hands on the ball. Although Swansea had a mass of possession and all the territory they could not increase their lead. As the half entered its latter stages the Wanderers started to get a little ball and they began to put together a number of chances. With forwards and backs combining well Swansea were drawn into some desperate defence and having been penalised at a ruck James Thomas opened the Wanderers scoring with a penalty. The Wanderers continued to establish themselves in the game and on several occasions they came close to scoring. Just before half time another ruck offence allowed James Thomas another penalty chance and the sides went into the break with the Wanderers holding an unlikely 6-5 lead.
The second half mirrored the first with the baulk of the play being with the All Whites. Time and time again they set up several phases of attacks only to be thwarted by a dogged Wanderers defence. Eventually something was bound to give and when Nick Kelly was sent to the sin bin the visitors took the decisive advantage. Once again driving from a lineout deep in Wanderer’s territory allowed Mark Popham to find some space and he crashed over in the corner for his second try and Swansea lead 6-10. The Wanderers sent on some fresh legs and although they had little to show from territory in the game they were still in with a chance of an upset. Jamie Jones and James Loxton came close to scoring and with the game entering its final quarter both sides had chances. With 10 minutes to go the Wanderers were penalised once again and at last Swansea were successful with a penalty to give them a decisive 6-13 lead. They tried in vain to put the game beyond the home side but the wanderers hung onto their tails and as the game reached the final minutes the Wanderers squandererd one clear opportunity to gain an unlikely draw and finally had to concede defeat to a very strong Swansea side who are deservedly 3rd in the Premiership.
Author: Alyn Humphreys
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