Brecon RFC | 1st Team 35 - 31 Abercynon RFC | 1st Team
Jake Crockett
Try 3
Jake Newman
Conversion 2
Penalty 2
Daniel Thomas Howe
Try 2

Match Report
26 April 2015 / Team News

Brecon 35 - Abercynon 31

With the league title well and truly secured Brecon faced their final league match of the season against a resurgent Abercynon. For much of the season Abercynon have struggled in the lower quarter of the league with relegation being a possibility until a good run of five wins in their last six matches propelled them into the mid-table zone. Brecon, therefore, faced a genuine challenge if they were to end the league season on a winning note.

The win they achieved and added a bonus point after scoring 5 tries. However, they were made to battle hard particularly in the second half. At one stage things looked comfortable for the league champions as they opened up a lead of 32 points to 12 but a yellow card at this stage changed the character of the game to such an extent that Brecon were left hanging on as Abercynon inexorably cut back the deficit to finish just four points short.

Conditions were almost perfect and with both sides willing to run with the ball it was clear from the outset that this would be a high scoring match. There was also a distinctly end of season feel about the game as both sides were rather loose thus allowing their opponents space. The end result was a ten try spectacle with a total of 66 points scored.

Brecon started brilliantly. They made a hash of gathering the ball off the kick off but from the ensuing line out they drove hard. When the pack finally delivered the ball on half way it was quickly moved to mid-field where full back Gwyn Pengelly took a man and ball pass but showed great strength in making ground up to the Abercynon ten metre line. The ball was quickly re-cycled and moved left to Eifion Jones who cut the Abercynon defensive line, handed off the cover and put Jake Crocket in for his first try of the afternoon.

Brecon soon increased their lead. No 8 Craig Davies broke out of the home 22 before the ball was kicked downfield. The chase was good and Crockett and Rob Price made the tackle on full back J Williams on the visitors 22 where they yielded a penalty which Jake Newman comfortably converted.

At this point it all looked as if Brecon could cruise to a comfortable win. That feeling was quickly dispelled when Abercynon responded with an excellent try of their own. From a scrum near half way they moved the ball right and full back Williams cut through a yawning gap in the Brecon defence. He was hauled down near the try line but he managed to pop up a try scoring pass to centre M Turner and Brecon’s lead was cut to three points.

Brecon quickly returned to the offensive but failed to make the most of the opportunities they created. That failure proved to be costly as Abercynon wing K Williams picked up a loose ball and put in a speculative kick ahead. He chased hard and showed great pace and when Brecon failed to get someone under the ball he benefitted from a fortuitous bounce. With the ball evading everyone bar him he crossed under the posts and Turner added the conversion to give the visitors a 12 points to 8 lead.

Now into the second quarter of the game Brecon took complete control. The deficit was quickly turned into lead. Outside half Jake Newman created the try when he spotted the Abercynon defence drifting out too quickly. This gave him space and he used it to cut through himself before linking with second row Danny Howe. Danny, who has had an outstanding season, took the pass and crashed over for the try.

Within minutes Brecon went further ahead. From a scrum just outside the 22 Eifion Jones made a great break on a crash ball and put Jake Crockett in for a try which Newman converted. With just minutes of the half remaining, Brecon further extended their lead. Newman again showed awareness as he spotted the visitors defence was narrow and so tried to outflank it with a cross kick. The kick wasn’t perfect but it found space and this time the bounce favoured Brecon as it fell into the arms of Man of the Match, Danny Howe. Having worked hard to get across the field he took the ball in full stride and scored his second try. Newman again converted.

The second half started with Brecon holding a 15 point lead and with the breeze at their backs. That lead was quickly extended as wing Jake Crockett claimed his third try of the match and his 27th of the season. With Abercynon pressing hard, deep in the Brecon 22 Crockett intercepted a pass and ran in for a try from 80 metres.

Brecon’s lead was now up to 20 points and the game seemed to be in the bag. Abercynon could easily have folded at this point but instead they staged a remarkable comeback. They were aided by a sin binning, scoring twelve points while Brecon were reduced to 14 men. Into the breeze they played sensibly, keeping the ball in hand and denying Brecon possession. Centre G Turner in particular showed up time and again and caused numerous problems for the Brecon defence.  After a series of raids on the Brecon line Turner crashed over for a deserved try.

With confidence building and with Brecon failing to clear their lines it wasn’t long before Turner intervened again. He drew the defence and then threw a lovely wide pass out to speedster K Williams who crossed for his second try. M Turner converted and suddenly Abercynon were just 8 points adrift.

Brecon realised that the game could be slipping away from them and so when they were awarded a penalty they opted for the kick at goal and Newman added the three points.

With time running out the game was effectively over but in the dying moments Abercynon gained a second bonus point when Williams scored his third and the team’s fifth try. Turner’s conversion brought Abercynon to within four points of Brecon as the referee blew for full time.

So the 2014/15 league season ended with Brecon having played 22 matches and lost three, all at home. Now all that remains is the Mid District Bowl. On Thursday 30th April they face Porth in a semi-final match at Abercynon, kick off 7:15pm.