King Arthur alive! scores try in Bedwas!



“A brave performance in which we never accepted defeat. Once we had improved our tackle completion we looked a different side” commented Paul Matthews.

“Glad I didn’t play “added Lee Highgate “far too fast for my legs”.

On a glorious day of firsts to end the season in a game that went down to the final play of the game with all results still on the table.

1st time the sun shone this season!
1st time we scored 6 tries in a league game this season.
1st time we have been behind at half time and gone on to win a game.
1st time Mike Vaughan didn’t complain about the size of his shorts!
1st time Mark Gould smiled!

On a day that certainly had an end of season feel about it both teams served up a superb game of rugby with the result in doubt until the referee called time on an enthralling encounter. The Wanderers began brightly going through the phases with their recent high tempo style to the fore. Unfortunately, the first major incident of the game saw scrum half Steff Davies hobble off with a nasty knee injury to be replaced by Chadd Davies which resulted in Aron “well, I’ll have a go” Arthur offering to take over at number 9. After an early bout of defence the home side struck. Showing great off loading and like the Wanderers showing a willingness to attack whenever the chance arose they furnished the first score of the game 5-0. The resulting conversion attempt was charged down by Davies keeping it at 5-0. The visitors then struck straight back. With Bedwas on the attack an attempted offload landed in Arthur’s hands. He shrugged off the attention of several would-be tacklers, broke free and outpaced all the cover to run 60 metres to level it up at 5-5. Ceri Morris stepped up for the conversion only to spot a member of the Ofsted team in the crowd causing him to hook his kick off target! The home side regained control. With Wanderers defenders falling off tackles on a regular basis the home side resecured the lead with their second try and conversion 12-5 and soon afterwards their dominance furnished them a third try to extend their lead to 17-5. After 30 minutes the visitors tried to calm the fast pace to the game when awarded a penalty but Morris still affected by the Ofsted presence hooked another kick into the bar. The high tempo of the game from both sides returned and the home side secured a bonus point in the first half soon afterwards after some neat play by their backs as they ran in their fourth try making it 24-5. The Wanderers looked for inspiration and it was to be the new scrum half Arthur who provided it breaking clear on the stroke of half time he set up the attack. Ned Bennett then went close and as Bedwas ran out of defenders Josh Male popped up to crash over under the posts. Morris who had received counselling for his earlier trauma added the conversion and both sides headed for a much needed breather in the changing rooms with the home side ahead 24-12 at half time.

The great speed of the game continued into the second half with George Cottrell showing the defence a clean pair of heels early on and he turned defence into attack. The visitors took play deep and after a move of several phases sub hooker Jacob Newman cut a great angle to burst through the line. In the manner of many great Wanderers hookers of the past (Phil Ado, Mike Bishop and Me!) he raced away to score 24-17. The Massiv could sense a change in the momentum and when Morris landed a penalty the visitors were back in the match at 24-20. Soon afterwards another attack instigated by Arthur resulted in Cottrell scoring the bonus point try for the Wanderers and with Morris now recovered he added the conversion 24-27. The pace of the game showed no sign of letting up and Bedwas regrouped and went back on the attack. A period of pressure resulted in the Wanderers having to dig deep in defence, but the home side regained the lead with their 5th try and conversion 31-27. The game went from end to end with a high level of skill on show from both sides and the match very much in the balance. The Wanderers struck next as Male added his second try of the game to edge them in front again 31-34 as the game entered its final quarter. Back came Bedwas again. They had chances to level it up with penalties but they went all out for the win and their decision was rewarded when a tap penalty resulted in their 6th try of the game and they were ahead again 38-34. The lead didn’t last long. The visitors went back on the attack and when awarded a penalty in the red zone Amir Jiwa Walji took a quick tap and forced his way over for the Wanderers 6th try 38-41. The game entered injury time with several players down with heat stroke. Lucy was on hand to administer sunscreen to those who needed it and Bedwas threw everything at the Wanderers in effort to keep their promotion chances alive. The Massiv went into full “nail biting” mode as it was backs to the wall time. The home side pummelled the line but once again it was  Arthur who made the crucial intervention jackalling a penalty to allow the visitors to clear the ball and gain a moral boosting end of season win. Final score after a wonderful game 38-41.

Wanderers Scorers

Tries: Aron Arthur, Josh Male (2), George Cottrell, Amir Jiwa Walji, Jacob Newman

Con: Ceri Morris (4)
Penalty Ceri Morris

Massiv MOM:  Chadd Davies         Special Mention: Aron Arthur
Management MOM: Aron Arthur       Special Mention: George Cottrell

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