GLAMORGAN WANDERERS RFC 24
“The hours at the last chance saloon have just got extended and some have moved back to the main bar” commented manager Gavin Walker after the win over Treorchy.
“We cannot put the Rumney defeat totally behind us but another good performance next Saturday and we’ll all be feeling positive about next season” added coach Chris Ower.
A cloudy afternoon greeted the players and the Wanderers warmed the supporters by going straight on the attack. From a charged down kick they forced a 5 metre lineout but despite going very close, tight Treorchy defence turned the ball over and the threat eased. Back came the home side and play stayed firmly camped in the visitors 22 but the visitors were not in the mood to concede points and eventually they broke downfield. The home side needed to make an early change in the front row when Ross Grimstone was injured but the games high tempo continued. From a lineout in Wanderers territory the Zebras went through the phases and when the home side were caught not releasing at a ruck Celyn Ashton stepped up to put the visitors in front 0-3. The Wanderers stepped up the pace and with the outside backs always looking dangerous the ball was moved wide at every opportunity. Treorchy continued to stand firm but after 24 minutes the home side eventually broke through. Using controlled phase play they created space out wide and Tom Daley, who always shows a willingness to attack, was on hand to finish off a fine move in the corner. Gareth Cull converted from the touchline 7-3. The four point lead did not last long and a second Ashton penalty reduced the arrears to 7-6. The home side were certainly having more of the play but the defence was called upon on several occasions to snuff out dangerous Treorchy attacks. Just after half an hour the Wanderers increased their lead. A set move from a lineout put Charlie Johnson through in midfield. Despite having a lot to do Charlie charged to the line and although the defence looked as though it might close him down he shrugged off tacklers to cross besides the posts. Cull converted 14-6. The home side had their tails up now and as the half came to a close and the Wanderers piled on the pressure. The packs became a little fractious after a disagreement over whether the Voice is better than Britain’s got talent but the half ended with Cull landing his first penalty to make the half time score 17-6.
The second half continued with once again the home side seemingly in control. Several chances to extend the lead were presented to the Wanderers but they lacked the composure to put the game to bed. Cull had a kick in front of the posts mysteriously pulled into the trees by a freak wind?? (That’s what he said!!!) and Charlie Johnson found a bouncing ball too hot to hold onto when the line beckoned. It was all Wanderers but Treorchy had other ideas and in a flash they were back in the game. A neat move down the blindside from a scrum, put Andrew Mallin through who charged over from 30 metres. Ashton converted and it was game on again 17-13. The game flowed from end to end as both sides strove for the next score. Treorchy brought on some cavalry but the killer blow came from Johnson again. After a penalty had given the home side a penalty deep in Treorchy territory the ball was moved into midfield. Owain Thomas set up a ruck and with swift ball out wide Johnson rounded off the move. Cull converted (the wind had died down!) 24-13. Most people thought that would be that and the home side ignored a further three points as they went for a bonus point .The game continued and showing great spirit Treorchy stormed back. As injury time arrived Peter Hutching scored for the visitors and with an Ashton conversion it was game on for the final plays. There were worried looks around the Memorial ground as the Zebras mounted one last attack and only desperate defence prevented a shock reversal. The Wanderers hung on for the 24-20 victory.
Match pics: http://www.flickr.com/photos/12570451@N04/