Brecon RFC | 1st Team 33 - 22 Tata Steel (PT) RFC | 1st Team
Dafydd Edwards
Try 3
Ben Griffin
Try 2
Dion Mcintosh
Conversion 1
Penalty 2

Match Report
26 November 2023 / Team News

Brecon 33 Tata Steel 22

As a precursor to Brecon’s home league match at Parc de Pugh both the home side, and visitors, Tata Steel, lined up with the match officials to show respect for the sad loss of Anwen Peters. Anwen first became involved with Brecon RFC when her eldest son Rhys joined the mini section. Her involvement continued when the younger two sons, Gruff and Steff, started their rugby journey. Not only did Anwen show support on the pitch for her children and the Club but she also took on active roles within the Club, including, organising the Under 16 Tour to Belluno in 2019 and acting as Youth Team Manager for a number of seasons. The two-minute silence reflected the Club’s respect for her and the deep sympathy felt for husband Kelly, sons Rhys, Gruff and Steffan, and parents Lyn and Mike. Anwen will be sorely missed by all who knew her.

When the competitive match started, Brecon set off at a high tempo, looked dangerous and within minutes posted the first points when Dion McIntosh kicked a simple penalty. To some extent that impressive start raised false hopes amongst the faithful. With a 100% record under their belts and facing a team firmly lodged at the foot of the league and without a win to their name, Brecon could have been expected to take the early and then race away with the game. To some extent that scenario did not pay their opponents sufficient respect, and what followed certainly brought the Brecon down to earth. A bonus point win, 33 points to 22, was achieved but in the words of Head Coach, Dale McIntosh, “It was an ugly win. We will take it and learn from it, but we will have to improve if we are to overcome the challenge of teams, like next week’s opponents, Dunvant, particularly on their home patch.”

Having taken the lead Brecon looked to build on it particularly when Geraint Powell claimed the kick off and Brecon went wide to full back Geraint Walsh and wing, Dafydd Edwards. They made good ground down the right but Brecon were penalised at the breakdown on the visitors 22. From there Brecon not only took the pressure off their opponents but invited pressure on themselves, a trait that was repeated on a number of occasions throughout the match. The first penalty was followed by a second and then a third, allowing Tata to take play from their 22 to within 5 metres of Brecon’s line. Brecon defended well for a time by when their big number 8 made ground, space opened up for their centre to cut a good line and score under the posts making the conversion a formality.

To quell the rising confidence in the Tata side, Brecon needed to sore next. This they did thanks to a great Geraint Walsh catch and mark under severe pressure, followed up with a superb kick, chase and tackle, to win a penalty that McIntosh converted. Again, the expectation of the home support was that Brecon would soon take control of the game but again this expectation was not realised. Brecon attacked but a lack of accuracy prevented them from adding to the scoreboard. In fact, once again it was the victors who claimed the next score. When Brecon lost the ball at a ruck in the Tata 22, the Tata outside half spotted that Brecon were disorganised and narrow. His wide kick was caught by his wing. In space he raced down the field only to be halted by a great Dion McIntosh tackle in the corner. Brecon claimed the line out, kicked to clear but the kick was easily gathered and after a single-phase Brecon gave away a kickable penalty. Brecon should have learned from this mistake but, unfortunately, the pattern of giving away penalties and failing to clear their lines with an accurate kick and effective chase, persisted for much of the afternoon.

As the half wore on Brecon suddenly started to look more clinical. As they managed to sustain more pressure so opportunities came and they were brilliantly taken. Before half time two tries were scored by left wing Dafydd Edwards. The build up to both was almost identical. From a dominant scrum in the Tata 22 Ollie Lewis cut back inside. His power drew in a number of defenders and when ruck ball was won Tata’s defence was caught narrow. Dion McIntosh spotted the opportunity and he exquisitely executed a wide kick pass for Dafydd to gather and to score, with McIntosh converting. The second came from a line out. This time with Ben Pritchard and Geraint Powell committing the defence before McIntosh again put Edwards away with his precise kick.

When Brecon scored first in the second half things started to look comfortable. The try was certainly the try of the day and resulted from an outstanding individual passage of play. Full back Geraint Walsh gathered a kick on his ten-metre line. He stepped past the first defender and then chipped the next before regathering close to the touchline. As cover came across, he angled for the corner but called for support on the inside. As two defenders aimed to take him into touch, he perfectly flipped the ball from behind his back to supporting Ben Griffin, allowing the wing to score.

Again, after this great start to the half, Brecon allowed the resilient Tata team back into the contest. A silly late tackle resulted in a penalty and Yellow Card. Tata won a line out in the corner and against a depleted Brecon pack drove over to score. Brecon with just an eight-point advantage were now forced to battle hard to maintain or improve their lead. Iwan Dowling Jones did his best for the side with some powerful runs as did wing Ben Griffin but using more pace and subtle skills. Finally, Brecon were rewarded. Aneurin James drove hard near the Tata line. He was held up and Brecon moved the ball beautifully across the backs for Geraint Walsh to draw and give the scoring pass to Dafydd Edwards, his third try of the afternoon.

Brecon were now clinical and after a great Richie Davies run, Brecon camped on the visitors 5 metre line. Finally, after a number of scrums, Logan McIntosh broke blind off and advancing scrum, fed Geraint Workman who drew the last man and put Grifin away for his second try. Brecon could and should have closed out the game at this point but as was the pattern of the day they allowed their opponents to have the next and last score of the afternoon. Tata’s centre broke from deep in his half, kicked ahead and Jake Newman was forced to fall on the ball in the shadow of the posts. From a penalty Tata used the ball and after a few phases scored a well-deserved converted try to end the afternoon.