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18 November 2017 / Club News

MERTHYR 50 PONTYPRIDD 21

MERTHYR PACK DOMINATE IN LOCAL DERBY WIN

MERTHYR 50 PONTYPRIDD 21

 

Merthyr ran in 7 tries against leagues Pontypridd in the second local derby of the season. Earlier in the season Merthyr were well beaten at Sardis Road by the League leaders but on Friday night in front of the biggest crowd of the season, Merthyr turned the tables on Pontypridd. However, it was the visitors that took the lead in the opening 5 minutes when second row Josh Hawkins burst onto an inside pass deep inside the Merthyr 25, and some poor home tackling allowed him to crash over under the posts, outside half Diggy Bird converted and Ponty, had taken a 0-7 lead. Ponty extended their lead further when Merthyr gave away a penalty on the half way line for not releasing, and Bird stroked the penalty over to give Ponty a 0-10 lead. This seemed to wake the Merthyr side up and some good pick up and drives from, Ed Siggery, Osian Davies, and Phil Rees began to turn the pressure back on Ponty and when a scrum near the Ponty line collapsed on the third reset, referee Mike English awarded the ironmen a penalty try to close the gap 7-10. Merthyr then gave a second penalty away just outside the half way line which was successfully converted once again by Bird to edge Ponty ahead 7-13. At this stage, the Merthyr side were guilty of giving silly penalties away allowing Ponty back into the game. From the restart, they gave away a third penalty, which Bird made no mistake with to stretch Ponty’s lead 7-16. From the restart, a lapse of concentration from the Ponty side allowed wingman Kyle Evans to catch the high ball and race away up the touch line  for Merthyr’s second try, full back Matthew Jarvis converted to close the gap 14-16 and it was game on. The lineouts were even contested with home second rows Ben Sier and Captain Craig Locke winning the lion’s share of possession. Just before half time Merthyr took the lead for the first time when a scrum possession inside the Ponty 25 was swiftly moved by outside half Gareth Davies who fed wingman Kyle Evans on the inside pass to race over under the posts, Jarvis converted and Merthyr had taken a 21-16 half time lead in a pulsating game of Premiership rugby. As the second half began it was Merthyr that started the stronger and were awarded a penalty after Ponty had handled on the floor, the ever-reliable Jarvis making no mistake to give Merthyr a 24-19 lead. It was now all Merthyr as the Ponty pack were driven backwards in the set piece and the driving maul and it was not long before a strong run from centre Arron Pinches beat the weak tackling of the Ponty defence to crash over near the posts, Jarvis converted to give Merthyr the bonus point and to extend the lead 31-16. Ponty had no answer to the dominant Merthyr side and things soon got worse for the visitors when home scrum half Rhys Downes jinked his way over near the Ponty line from the set Piece, Jarvis converted to take his personal tally passed the 100 points for the season and more importantly extend the lead 38-16. Merthyr kept the pressure on the Ponty 8 and were rewarded when a penalty kick at goal was turned down with the catch and drive from the lineout being driven forward by the Merthyr pack with back Rowman Osian Davies crashing over wide out, once again Jarvis converted and Merthyr now led, 45-16. As hard as Ponty tried they had no answer to the power and domination of the Merthyr side and when wingman Kristian Phillips caught a cross kick he raced away clear to cross wide out and Merthyr had reach 50points. Deep in stoppage time Ponty did manage a consolation try when a fine break from full back Garry Williams was finished off by Ponty captain Dafydd Lockyer to bring the final score 50-21. This was a great advert for Premiership rugby with both sides playing their part in a thrilling and pulsating game of rugby football, although the ironmen showing their dominance in a second half which saw them score 29 points there was only 5 points separating the sides at half time. For the home side, it was the Merthyr pack that laid the foundations for the win, with front row men Nathan Trevett, Matthew Dwyer, and Joe Rees causing their opposite numbers big problems in the set piece. Behind the scrum the Merthyr three quarters are beginning to gel with the Hard running and tackling of centre Arron Pinches causing sides problems, and the ironmen have also found pace on the wings in Kyle Evans and Kristian Phillips, and not forgetting the reliable boot of full back Matthew Jarvis. This Saturday Merthyr travel to Rodney Parade to face the Black and ambers of Newport for an early 1 o’clock kick off due to the Wales v All Blacks game at Cardiff later.

MERTHRY: 15 M JARVIS, 14 K EVANS, 13 T RILEY, 12 A PICHES, 11 K PHILLIPS, 10 G DAVIES, 9 R DOWNES, 1 N TREVETT, 2 M DWYER, 3 J REES, 4 B SIER, 5 C LOCKE(C) 6 E SIGGERY, 7 O DAVIES, 8 P REES, 16 J DOWNES, 17 R WILKES, 18 L JONES, 19 J DAVIES, 20 N WHITE, 21 J JAMES, 22 R POWELL, 23 S ANDREWS.

SCORERS. K EVANS 2T, K PHILLIPS 1T, A PINCHES 1T, R DOWNES 1T, O DAVIES 1T, PENALTY TRY, M JARVIS 1PEN 5 CONS. 

REFEREE: MIKE ENGLISH(MONMOUTH)      

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