Fixture

Porth Harlequins RFC | 1st Team 21 - 17 Brecon RFC | 1st Team
Jake Crockett
2 Try
Jake Newman
2 Conversion
1 Penalty

Match Report
03 May 2015 / Team News

Porth Quins 21 - Brecon 17

The final act of what has been a great season came not with a bang but a whimper. Brecon were looking to finish the season with their third successive appearance in the Mid District Bowl Final. In their semi-final match they faced worthy opponents Porth Quins at Abercwmboi. The recent history between the two sides suggested that the game would be close although in their Brecon had won the last five encounters. The margins of victory, however, had been narrowing with the gap between the two sides in their latest match at Parc de Pugh being just 5 points. Thus, although Brecon were favourites they knew that this would be a difficult encounter.

Difficult it certainly proved to be. For the most part Brecon were beaten up front. Porth were stronger in the scrummage and Brecon were wasteful at line out where they lost possession regularly particularly when they attempted to attack off a long throw. With little good primary possession Brecon were constantly on the back foot and were forced to defend for long periods. They generally defended well but in the end the constant pressure told. When Brecon did get good ball they did look dangerous but by the end of the game they were forced to attempt to run out of defence and although they made ground and kept themselves in with a chance of winning the game they were never in control of the match which was deservedly won by their opponents. 

Brecon started poorly with the kick off being put straight out of play. That put them under pressure immediately and that pressure in the Brecon half continued unabated for the first ten minutes. The defence was excellent with the likes of Rob Price in particular being effective in preventing Porth from capitalising on their dominance. Even though pinned back Brecon occasionally looked dangerous with Gwyn Pengelly and Eifion Jones making good breaks but it was all from too far out.

It came as some surprise, therefore when Brecon took the lead. Davey Herdman effected a turn over to relieve the pressure and then Danny Howe stole a line out, on his opponents throw, to allow Brecon to attack at last. Rob Price boke in mid-field and when he was brought down Porth were penalised and Jake Newman put the first points on the board.

Brecon supporters hoped that the score would help the team to settle but that hope was dashed right from the kick off. Throughout the season Brecon have struggled at this phase of play and this time was no different. The kick was knocked on and Brecon were again pinned in their half. Finally Porth capitalised on their territorial advantage as they converted the simplest of penalties to level the score.

With points on the board Porth increased in confidence and when they were awarded another penalty in a kickable position they took a quick tap rather than taking the three points. Their enterprise was rewarded. Brecon for the first time were disorganised in defence and Porth’s left wing stole in at the corner.

With time running out at the end of the first half, Brecon for the first time mounted a sustained attack. Wing, Joey Morgan and centre Eifion Jones both made telling breaks and although their incursions into the Porth defence did not lead to a score they helped to keep Brecon onto the front foot for the first time in the game. With the final play of the half Dan Edwards showed awareness as he initiated a try scoring move. His quickly taken tapped penalty was moved wide and into the hands of Jake Crockett. He immediately showed his try scoring prowess as he stole away on the outside and scored in the corner. Jake Newman stuck the conversion beautifully and Brecon went into halftime with a narrow two point lead. 

Sadly for Brecon the second half started as did the first with Brecon gifting possession to their opponents. This time Porth capitalised early when they restored their lead with a penalty. 

Brecon responded well. A break down the right led to a scrum on five metres but inexplicably Brecon lost the ball on their put in. The chance seemed completely lost as Porth broke out and took play back into the Brecon 22. With Porth threatening Crockett suddenly intercepted. He was quickly into full stride and there was no catching him as showed his opponents a clean pair of heals and ran in for his 29th try of the season. Newman converted and Brecon were six points ahead.

It took no time at all before Porth reduced that gap to a single point when their right wing outflanked the Brecon defence to touch down in the corner.

Critically Brecon then lost second row Danny Howe as he was dispatched to the sin bin. Porth took advantage of their numerical superiority and drove hard through their forwards. Their powerful maul became almost unstoppable and time and again Brecon were forced to concede ground. Finally the pressure again told and Porth scored to give themselves a four point lead.

In the dying minutes Brecon tried hard to find the score they needed but although Joey Morgan and Eifion Jones broke tackles everything was happening too deep in Brecon territory for there to be any real hope of an escape. At the final whistle Porth celebrated their deserved win while Brecon were left to reflect on a great season which sadly ended on a flat note..

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