Porthcawl earn resilient win over Baglan

By GEM Community Correspondent in Rugby

With second-placed Bridgend Sports’ match having fallen foul of a waterlogged pitch, Porthcawl welcomed third-placed Baglan to South Road, for what turned out to be a tremendous match.

Having bagged the spoils in the early season match, Baglan arrived with the intent of winning this match too but the home side held firm throughout and deservedly got a vital win.

It was the visitors that drew first blood however, as they capitalised on an early breakdown of Porthcawl possession 40 metres out and livewire scrum half Rhys Davies hacked through and won the race for the opening try, with barely five minutes gone for 0-5 as the conversion fell short.

Porthcawl’s pack was again displaying a readiness to take the game to Baglan as they drove time after time into the visitors’ territory, allowing the backs to put pressure on Baglan’s defence.

When a scrum close to the Baglan line saw the Porthcawl pack shove the Baglan scrum backwards before collapsing.

Referee David Swain awarded a penalty try which Josh White converted to put the Seaweeds ahead at 7-5.

Full back Dan Bleddyn pulled back a penalty for Baglan with his big boot punishing a Porthcawl offside for a slender 7-8 lead, while White came agonisingly close with two successive penalty shots at goal for Porthcawl, which would have restored the lead.

White however, made amends minutes later when he fired over a good goal from 38 metres for 10-8, before a breakthrough score put the Seaweeds further ahead at the break.

A solid line-out 20 metres out saw Porthcawl’s pack shunt Baglan backwards with a mighty surge and flanker James Burge-Davies, again having an outstanding match, came up last with the ball having touched down for the try.

White’s exceptional conversion from the right hand touchline put Porthcawl ahead at 17-8 to end the half.

Baglan are a determined and well-drilled outfit these days and enjoyed some superiority of their own early in the second spell as they resorted to up-the-middle tactics to gain position.

When Porthcawl fell offside at a ruck 24 metres out and in front, Bleddyn kicked his second penalty for 17-11 but with a short while White had cancelled those points out as he slotted another penalty from 38 metres for 20-11, effectively winning the match.

Baglan had other ideas as they chased the match going into final minutes, earning a corner lineout.

However, the returning Nick Nutman at lock for Porthcawl, stole the attacking throw-in and Baglan’s last chance was gone.

Porthcawl further cemented their place at the top of the division but with a tough away trip to Crynant on Saturday, they will need to be on top of their game once again.

PF

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