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13 January 2018 / Club News

Gorseinon 24 - 22 Aberystwyth

Gors go over in the final minutes to secure the victory while the 2nd XV recovered from last weeks defeat to overcome Bonymaen in the Swansea and District League

Match report by David Rudge,Aberystwyth RFC

In a fast, entertaining and closely fought game at the Welfare Ground, it was the hosts who finally emerged as winners. Despite the heavy ground conditions and persistent rain both teams tried to play open, running rugby. 
Aber’s defence was severely tested from the start as Gorseinon won the lion’s share of possession to mount wave after wave of attacks. The game was very closely contested but it was the home side that scored first. A huge shove at a scrum 10 metres out drove back the visitors’ pack for No 8 Jamie Evans to touch down. Scrum half Jack Gronow added the conversion for a 7 – 0 lead after ten minutes. 
The hosts used the wind advantage very well to gain attacking positions and with good offloading and support play throughout the team, they kept Aber under pressure. As the visitors came more and more into the game, winning possession and gaining ground, they hit back with a try from second row forward Arwel Lloyd after a fine break by Carwyn Evans. Llyr Thomas converted with an excellent kick from out wide to level the score at 7 – 7.
After a period of sustained pressure Gorseinon regained the lead with a try from flanker Declan Thomas, converted again by Gronow for a half-time lead of 14 – 7. 
With the advantage of the strengthening wind Aber were in a good position to hit back. But strong pressure by the hosts made it difficult for the visitors to gain clean possession sufficient to enable them to kick for attacking field positions. This pressure, and the wet ball, resulted in handling errors which Gorseinon capitalised on relentlessly and they were rewarded for their efforts with an unconverted try from flanker Emyr Stone to extend their lead to 19 – 7.
Aber then had their best period of the game as more possession, better kicking and improved handling saw them mount a series of attacks. Llyr Thomas added a penalty, and a good penetrating burst by full-back Matthew Hughes, well supported by his threequarters, saw Arwel Lloyd cross for his second try. The conversion failed but at 19 – 17 and a strengthening wind behind them, the visitors were in a stronger position.
They went into the lead for the first time as a result of a fine break out of his own half by Matthew Jacobs. He fed hooker Carwyn Thomas who fended off defenders to race 40 metres for the line. He was brought down just short but managed to reach out to ground the ball for an excellent try. The conversion failed but Aber were ahead for the first time in the match at 19 – 22.
With just ten minutes of the match remaining, a ‘safety first’ strategy was called for to close the game down and protect the lead. But a loose kick that failed to find touch enabled the hosts to mount one last attack. A well-executed close passing movement saw them gain 40 metres to force a lineout from which they stole possession and drove over for the winning try to close the score at 24 – 22.
The home side gained most of the possession and territory in the match and had it not been for the visitors’ tireless covering and tackling, the winning margin would have been greater. The result might also have been different had Aber made better use of the strong wind in the second half and with better kicking from hand generally.
There were some excellent individual performances. Arwel Lloyd was always in the thick of the action and was undoubtedly Aber’s man-of-the-match. But every forward contributed with a fine effort. Behind the scrum, centres Carwyn Evans and Matthew Jacobs played well in attack and in defence. Wingers Ian Ellis and Steffan Rees looked dangerous with ball in hand but were underused. Matthew Hughes at full-back made some penetrating bursts.
This was a disappointing defeat for Aber that saw them drop to eighth place in Division 1 West while Gorseinon moved up to second place.

League 1 West results for Saturday 13 January 2018

Felinfoel 14 - 16 Penclawdd
Gorseinon 24 - 22 Aberystwyth
Kidwelly 3 - 13 Llangennech
Tenby United 15 - 9 Gowerton
Dunvant 21 - 7 Llanelli Wanderers
 
Swansea & District League A results for Saturday 13 January 2018
 
Gorseinon 13 - 0 Bonymaen
Morriston P - P Seven Sisters
Waunarlwydd 12 - 10 Dunvant

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