11 March 2018 / Team News

Suprising two bonus points for Emlyn


Emlyn’s previous two visits to Beddau, in the Championship, have resulted in two resounding defeats, and after fifty minutes play on Saturday they looked to be on the receiving end of another almighty hammering. Thirty points to six down, with a number of players performing way below the standards they are capable of, it looked to be a very long final half hour ahead for the few who had made the trip up to support the team. Then coach Marc Lloyd brought on Mike Jones, Emrys Davies and Ifan James, and they brought not only fresh legs to the game but an energy to the Emlyn side which had been sadly lacking prior to this. Fortunately the rest of the team responded and Emlyn ended up coming away from this encounter with two very valuable League bonus points.

The first fifty minutes of the game was very much a case of Emlyn mistakes and indiscipline gifting scoring opportunities to the home side. Beddau outside half Hywel Chatham was quickly on the scoreboard with two penalty goals within the first ten minutes. Emlyn did manage a reply when Mitchell Jones kicked a thirty five metre penalty after twelve minutes play but, despite playing with the breeze, Emlyn’s inability to control any possession meant Beddau were able to continue to apply pressure on the Emlyn line. They extended their lead when Emlyn forwards were penalised at a maul close to the line and lively scrum half Tom Slater took a quick tap kick and put right winger Joe Casella over for a try in the corner.

From the restart Emlyn flanker Joel James was rather unfortunate to be penalised at a ruck for not rolling away with four Beddau forwards lying on top of him. To compound matters James was yellow carded but had to be helped off the field with a serious looking knee injury and he did not return, being replaced by Gareth Thomson. The potential loss of James could be huge for the red and whites as his ball carrying in the loose is a major asset. Emlyn’s first half performance was best summed up when captain Alex Williams burst through some weak tackles and stormed downfield but when he came to the last defender he found that his supporting runners were nowhere near him. Fortunately from the ensuing ruck Beddau were penalised and Mitchell Jones converted the penalty kick.

Approaching half time, Beddau extended their lead courtesy of some woeful Emlyn indiscipline. Penalised at a line out, back chat to the referee saw the mark advanced some ten metres allowing Chatham to kick the ball into touch  ten metres from the Emlyn line. From the catch and drive Beddau second row Lloyd Evans was accredited with the unconverted try.

The start of the second half was basically a repetition of the first half and things looked ominous for the red and whites when winger Casella ghosted through some would be tacklers to score a try converted by Chatham. From the restart Chatham drove Emlyn back deep into their twenty two and the red and whites tried to run the ball out of defence. The ball was turned over and  Casella crossed for his third try converted by Chatham, to extend their lead to twenty four points.

The arrival of the replacements with half an hour to go certainly rejuvenated Emlyn. Awarded a penalty kick in the Beddau half, scrum half Mike Jones took a quick tap and fed the ever present centre Steffan Evans who crossed for Emlyn’s first try but the conversion unfortunately hit the post. Jones’ speed off the mark began to pose problems for the home defence. Five minutes later, from a scrum on the half way line, number eight Brynmor Jones picked up and fed Jones on the narrow side. The scrum half shot off and left Chatham grasping at his shadow as he rounded the outside half. He then linked with winger LLyr Jones, who passed back inside to Jones who then passed to Brynmor Jones who drew the last defender to put centre Tomi Jones over for a try under the posts converted by Mitchell Jones.

Emlyn’s revival faltered half way through the half when lively second row Dan Havard had to leave the field with concussion, to be replaced by veteran player coach Arwel Davies. Beddau replaced their two props and they proved to be more aggressive scrummagers than their predecessors, and Beddau extended their lead when Emlyn just managed to halt an attempted pushover try only for Slater to feed Sam Tiley from the resultant ruck. The flanker crossed for the try in the corner, well converted by Chatham.

With five minutes left in the match a wayward line out throw was pounced on by replacement flanker Gareth Thomson who charged downfield. He linked with Steffan Evans, who fed the supporting Mike Jones who in turn supplied the scoring pass for prop Emrys Davies to cross for a try under the posts, converted via a drop goal by Dan Davies. From the restart Emlyn threw everything at the home defence as they realised that another try would give them a try bonus point as well as bringing them within reach of a losing bonus point. They hammered away at the Beddau line with only some desperate, often illegal, defending keeping them out. Eventually Emlyn moved the ball wide and, with hardly any room at all to move in, winger Dan Davies rounded his opposite number, just managed to stay infield and crossed for the fourth try of the match to give the red and whites an unlikely two bonus points.

Before the game Emlyn would have happily accepted two bonus points from a venue where they have never played well at, however, on reflection, as captain Alex Williams told the side afterwards if they had played with the same intensity as they showed in the last half hour throughout the game they probably would be coming away with a bonus point victory. One can only hope that they play with that intensity in their next game when Bedlinog will be the visitors to Dôl Wiber on the 24th March.

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