Skewen RFC | 1st Team 0 - 7 Beddau RFC | 1st Team

Match Report
15 January 2018 / Team News

Injury Mars Vital Vital Win For Green And Gold

Beddau last tasted victory on 14 October and the slide down the table has been accompanied by its share of injuries and misfortune.  That confidence has been low hardly needs stating but some glimmers of light on the injury front are raising morale but nothing lifts spirits more than a win.

After his exertions from the bench at Bedlinog hooker Jack Dando suffered a reaction to a long term knee injury that has, again, removed him from the ranks.  Head-coach Ross Johnson was forced to name himself as the replacement for Ethan Coombes but with skipper Lloyd Evans returning to the fold a little earlier than anticipated and with the return of an entire back row in Sam Tiley, Rhys Owen and Jordan Goodwin the pack contained a little more fire power.

Rain arrived at Tennant Park just before the Beddau coach but the playing surface was good and with the forwards delivering some quick ball Beddau executed a threequarter move.  Left wing Marcus Jones was on the end of a long pass and though a tackler reached him Jones had the momentum to stretch to the line.  Hywel Chatham landed the difficult conversion.

Up front it was Skewen looking the stronger at the set scrum and the hosts were also edging the penalty count as Beddau were guilty of infringing on the floor.  Some lively work from hooker Joe Davies and lock Ollie Thomson apart, Skewen were unable to create anything of note and it was when the home side prevented release that the first shot at the posts arrived.  Hywel Chatham`s kick came back from the upright and Skewen were able to clear.

Beddau were picking up the pace and a deliberate knock-on gave Hywel Chatham another attempt at the posts.  This one went wide and Skewen`s long clearance led to a period of pressure and a penalty that reached the kickable zone when referee Aled Liddington punished some back-chat.  Gareth Walters hooked the kick a little but was back in the saddle within minutes.  This time the kick struck the centre of the crossbar and rebounded into the arms of a grateful Adam Ashford to clear the lines.  Half time arrived with neither side able to move the scoreboard.

From the outset of the second period Beddau went in search of another score.  A neat chip from Hywel Chatham gave his forwards a ball they could take on and when the maul was pulled down Beddau used the lineout to set up another rolling maul.  Again a penalty was signalled and again Skewen were up to the task of closing the door.  At a continuing phase Beddau scrum half Lloyd Peart came away with a yellow card and Skewen a penalty that lifted the siege.

David Francis replaced Marcus Jones to fill the scrum half role and then slot ed into the left wing position when Peart`s sentence was served.  Skewen, in the meantime, had served notice that they could pose a threat and, following a 5 metre lineout huffed and puffed for a while at the Beddau line.  Some heroic work in the Beddau defence frustrated them and when possession was turned over Adam Ashford latched onto the ball.  With one man to beat the centre chipped over his head but the ball had too much pace and Skewen had a scrum back.  A prop was off receiving treatment and, for a time, scrums were non-contested.

With 5 minutes remaining Beddau brought on Glenn Slater at Number 8 with Ross Johnson replacing Ethan Coombes.  At that point Skewen`s wounded prop returned and scrums renewed their full force.  Beddau had, by now, settled for a holding operation but the memo hadn`t reached Dai Francis who cut inside to take a pass from Hywel Chatham and to lead a final assault.  A pass went to ground and a scrum was set.  Beddau did enough to negate Skewen`s ball but at the cost of Ross Johnson`s whose knee twisted to a painful and unsightly angle.  When play resumed Lloyd Peart briefly explored the openside but better judgement prevailed and his pass to Hywel Chatham saw the outside half safely find the touchline.

This was a bottom half struggle played out with a great deal of endeavour and with the spoils going marginally, but deservedly, to Beddau.  There is now something of a traffic jam in the lower half.  Glynneath, with 9 points, are currently adrift but Bedlinog, on 27 lead two clubs on 26 and a further two on 25.  Beddau now have consecutive home fixtures with Tata Steel and unblemished Pontypool as the visitors.

It was with a sense of deep regret that the team had to leave Skewen while the ambulance for the stricken Ross Johnson was yet to arrive.


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