09 October 2017 / Club News

Bridgend Athletic 22 Bonymaen 33

Bridgend Athletic 22 Bonymaen 33

Welsh Cup 1st Round – Sat Oct 7th 2017


Bonymaen came to the Morganstone Brewery Field for this 1st Round Welsh Cup undefeated to date this season. It was going to take a huge 15-man effort by Bridgend Athletic to progress further in this season’s competition. However, a propensity this season for picking up cards meant that for 15 minutes at the end of the first half and the start of the second the Athletic played 10 minutes with 14 men and 5 minutes with only 13 players. During this period Bonymaen picked up 12 unanswered points, eventually winning 33-22.


The Athletic started strongly. No 8 Sean Williams won good line out ball and backs and forwards laid siege to the visitor’s line. Bonymaen strayed offside and Athletic outside half Robin Davies kicked the resultant penalty to put his side ahead after 3 minutes. From the restart the Athletic dropped the ball. Bonymaen spotted the Athletic defending too narrow and a cross kick saw Kyle Salter gather and cross unopposed in the corner. This was a tactic the visitors used twice the previous season at their ground to narrowly defeat the Athletic. Outside half Steffan O’Connor converted.


It was then Bonymaen’s turn to mess up the restart. Athletic scrum half used quick possession to feed partner Robin Davies and full back Sam Richards ran a good angle to break through and cross wide out. Davies converted to make the score 10-7 to the Athletic in a hectic opening to the game. The game turned when the Athletic attacking inside the Bonymaen 22 saw a pass spilled. Bonymaen wing Nathan Brooks hacked the ball upfield with all the Athletic players committed in attack – he proceeded to fly hack the ball 75 metres and outsprint the Athletic cover to cross for a try conceded from an Athletic mistake. O’Connor’s conversion put his side 14-10 ahead after 12 minutes.


It remained that score until the closing minutes of the half. Bonymaen attempted a rolling maul close to the Athletic line. The referee judged Athletic hooker and captain for the day Nathan Holman to have illegally stopped it and sent him to the sin bin. Bonymaen opted for a 5-metre scrum. Although the 7-man Athletic pack held out Bonymaen the visitors moved the ball into midfield where centre Salter too easily broke through the Athletic defence to cross under the posts. O’Connor’s conversion put the visitors 21-10 ahead at half time.


Within 5 minutes off the restart the Athletics’ task became greater when replacement hooker Lee Murphy was also sin binned for tackling a player without the ball. Despite valiant defence and tackling by the Athletic backrow of MOM Ben Davies, Sean Williams and Jacob David Bonymaen played the numbers game and stretched the Athletic defence out wide for Salter to complete his hat trick of tries. With 10 minutes remaining Bonymaen also showed that as well as a potent attacking backline their pack could also do the Business.  Their flanker Nick Clancy was driven over for a try from a 5-metre rolling maul because of a line out penalty awarded for further Athletic indiscipline. The conversion gave the Swansea Valley side an unassailable 33-10 advantage.


From the restart the Athletic turned over possession and centre Tom Jenkins fed wing Dan Howells who came off his wing at speed to cross under the posts. Davies converted. Within a minute debutant youth wing Joe Patterson beat two defenders with an excellent 40 metres run along the touchline. Although halted just short of the line No 8 Sean Williams was on hand to cross in the corner. This reduced the deficit to 33-22.


Bonymaen then closed out the remaining 8 minutes to take a deserved victory playing a well-disciplined 15-man game with better game management than the Athletic.


Athletic head coach John Apsee was frustrated with not only discipline issues, but communication and organisation within the Athletic ranks to talk with each other and organise their defence, as well as disappointment with some missed tackles and dropped passes costing his side dearly on the day.


This Saturday the Athletic return to the Morganstone Brewery Field hoping to follow their last Div 1 West central success at Waunarlwydd when entertaining Seven Sisters.


Bridgend Athletic 2nd XV 16 Cefn Cribbwr 1st XV 17

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