MOUNTAIN ASH 7
“Despite the impressive score line for long periods we were sloppy in some of our play. On another day we could be punished for that” commented assistant coach Lee Highgate.
On a grey afternoon at the Memorial Ground things started brightly for the home side. From the first scrum a run-around from Luke Fish saw him take an offload from fullback Andy Evans and after shrugging off a couple of defenders he raced away to score 5-0. The game settled and it was clear that the Wanderers were playing the better of the two sides. The visitors had bouts of possession but the home side defence seemed able to cope with whatever was thrown at them. In attack, with ball in hand, the Wanderers looked dangerous but a lack of composure in the final third and a greasy ball made life difficult. From an attack from deep Evans and Cameron Gibbon took play into the opposition territory and The Old Firm were forced to concede a lineout in their own half. From the lineout the second score came. The Wanderers forwards adopted a “ball up the jumper” drive and as the defence splintered the maul was driven 30 metres allowing Peter Lloyd to crash over. Fish converted 12-0. Mountain Ash responded well. The home side were forced into a period of defensive work but when they obtained possession deep in their own half they struck again. Phillip Pariyo joined the line from the blindside, created the breach in the defence and he fed Evans who raced away to score. Fish converted 19-0. Once again the visitors responded, but they failed to bring any continuity to their game despite their best endeavours. The game seemed to stagnate for the rest of the half with the Wanderers seemingly taking their foot off the pedal. Several opportunities arose but “Bert in the box” was not called upon to add to the tally and the sides went into the break with the Wanderers comfortably ahead 19-0.
The start of the half saw the home side trying to pick the pace of the game up but once again there seemed to be lack of composure when chances presented themselves. Eventually the execution of a move was completed and from a lineout drive they scored again. When the drive was held up the ball went into midfield and Pariyo smashed through the defence to score under the posts. Fish converted 26-0. The bonus point try saw the home side call for the cavalry and a host of subs joined the fray. The Wanderers were gaining plenty of mileage out wide with Gibbon often at the head of the attacks and when a simple move from a scrum gave Pariyo another chance he needed no second invitation as he outpaced the cover to score his second try. That soon became a hat-trick when in their own 22 the home side struck again. Fish spotted Pariyo out wide and his cross kick put the winger away again. As has happened plenty of time this season Pariyo is deadly if given half a yard and he raced away through the defence to score his third try. Fish converted again making it 40-0. The visitor’s problems were compounded when they were forced at go passive in the scrums but they continued to battle on. After several phases of attack they eventually got something on the scoreboard with a converted try but it proved to be their only cheer of the afternoon. The Wanderers rounded off the scoring for the day when Josh Male, on as a sub, added a try and then to round off an impressive display Cameron Gibbon got his name on the scoresheet after a neat Fish chip was gathered by Josh Sheehan who set Gibbon off on a race to the corner. Fish converted. Final score Wanderers 52 Mountain Ash 7.
Tries: Phillip Pariyo (3), Josh Male, Dan Fish, Cameron Gibbon, Peter Lloyd, Andy Evans
Cons: Luke Fish (6)
Massiv Man of the match: Josh Sheehan