Wanderers come through tough away test
Cambrian Welfare 13
“We’ve been asking the players to manage the game better and in a difficult situation they stood up and put in one of their best performances for some time. This is a difficult place to get a result and we’re really pleased to come away with a win” commented coach Lee Highgate.
The Rhondda was certainly grey for the early kick off in Cambrian Welfare and not surprisingly the early exchanges were cagey with plenty of aerial stuff on offer. A difference of opinion amongst the forwards, as to how easy the ground was to find, resulted in a penalty to the visitors and Luke Fish kicked deep to establish good field position for the Wanderers. A forwards drive took play deeper and after two more phases Fish dropped a goal to open the visitors account 0-3. This lead was doubled soon afterwards after a ruck offence allowed Fish to land his first penalty of the afternoon 0-6 before Cambrian had really got into the game. At this point the home side seemed torn between kicking possession away and playing at a high tempo with ball in hand but they slowly started to gain more ball and showed glimpses of what they were capable of without really threatening. The Wanderers lead was then extended when, after good work by Max Cunnington on the right wing, the ball was recycled wide left and Will Adams Jones gathered a difficult pass and he outpaced the cover defence to score. Fish added the conversion 0-13. From the kick off another penalty allowed the visitors to keep up the pressure and the forwards started to flex their power with some concerted drives from lineouts. The home side defence was dogged and on several occasions, they dug deep to protect their line and eventually they cleared their lines and took play deep into Wanderers territory for the first time. As the half neared its end Cambrian had a sustained period of pressure. Behind their strong scrum they established solid field position and they worked the ball well out wide to furnish a good try to register their first score of the afternoon 5-13. The Wanderers responded and controlling the ball as they had done effectively most of the half they gained a penalty in Cambrian territory and Fish landed his second penalty to send the teams into the break at 5-16.
The Wanderers needed to keep control of the game but it was the home side that started the better. Showing a willingness to run and move the ball wide they looked more dangerous and early pressure was rewarded with a penalty to reduce the arrears to 8-16. With the advantage of the slope on the ground to help the visitors were able to clear deep into Cambrian territory and once again establish control of the game. This was rewarded with the second try of the afternoon. Young centre Cameron Gibbon made superb break in midfield and when ball was recycled quickly once again Adams Jones was on hand to take a great pass from Fish and cross in the corner. Fish converted 8-23. With signs that the game was slipping from their grasp Cambrian became more adventurous having to attack from deep but the Wanderers defence was solid and they limited the opportunities on offer. There was another bout of aerial tennis from both sides with both fullbacks showing excellent skills under the high ball despite the attention of onrushing attackers. The game entered its final quarter and Cambrian revived their chances with a second excellent try. Breaking clear on halfway they got behind the defence and despite the covering defenders they moved the ball wide again and crossed for their second unconverted try 13-23. The visitors regained their composure and as the home side tried to attack from deep again great jackaling from Mike Owen, on as a sub, gained them a penalty which Fish landed to make the score 13-26 and just out of sight for the home team. Cambrian rallied and for the last few minutes they exerted pressure on the visitors but despite their valiant efforts in the gathering gloom of the afternoon they could not breach the Wanderers line and the Visitors left with a deserved but hard fought victory. Final score 13-26
Tries: Will Adams Jones (2)
Cons: Luke Fish (2)
Pens: Luke Fish (3)
Drop Goal: Luke Fish
Massiv man of the match: Josh Sheehan