Dowlais RFC | 1st Team 45 - 19 Pontypool United RFC | 1st Team

Match Report
08 April 2024 / Team News

06/04/2024 Dowlais v Pontypool Utd Admiral National League 1 EAST Match Report

Dowlais Vs Pontypool United 06/04/2024 Match Report


Dowlais: 45

Pontypool United: 19

A solid, decisive bonus point victory for Dowlais this week, at home against Pontypool United.

Dowlais got off to a strong, fiery start in the opening breaths of the match, as they immediately took control and charged into the Pontypool twenty-two, scoring an early and very confident try.

Although unconverted, this early success got the home side off to a good start with a 5-0 lead.

But that early success wouldn’t pave the way for a several try onslaught, unlike what happened the last time Dowlais faced Pontypool, as the match switched to a much more balanced affair following it.

Although Dowlais made another good effort in those early stages, the next points would actually go to Pontypool instead, touching down a try of their own at around the ten minute mark. On top of that, they even managed to convert it, putting them just in the lead at 7-5, something that hadn’t happened at all during Dowlais’ previous away bout against them.

But any fears that that brief comeback would fully turn the tide of the match were soon allayed as Dowlais got right back to work in the visitors’ twenty-two. After a couple of goes and some unsuccessful attempts by Pontypool to get back in control, the home side eventually powered over the line again for their second try.

Thanks to a conversion from Conor Murphy, this try put Dowlais right back in the lead, just as the matched left its first quarter.

Dowlais kept up the pressure from that success and soon struck back with another converted try less than five minutes later, touched down by Ben Thomas following an excellent bit of running.

But just as things were starting to look as though they were comfortably in Dowlais’ control, Pontypool managed to pull themselves together and took the reins of the game again for a spell, scoring their second converted try as the half closed in on its final ten minutes.

While Dowlais were still in the lead, 19-14 was hardly an overwhelming lead or a massively reassuring one for the second half, with only a try’s worth of points keeping the game in their hands.

As such, the boys fought with all their might for the rest of the half to slam down another try and push further ahead, an effort that was rewarded mere seconds away from the half-time whistle, with their fourth try, touched down by Morgan Powell and converted by Conor Murphy.

After one last kick-off and uneventful final play, the half came to an end, with Dowlais sitting at a much more reassuring lead of 26-14, with a bonus point already under their belts.

As the second half got underway, the home side continued in much the same manner. Having already had many a great success on the attacking front so far, the boys pushed to increase their try count even more.

This continued effort bore fruit relatively early on with their fifth try of the match, this one also converted, bringing their lead to 33-14 and stretching the score gap to a sizeable nineteen for Pontypool to overcome.

But while the likelihood of the visitors being able to do so was starting to seem slim, they were soon given a great hand in doing so by Dowlais landing themselves with a yellow card almost straight after.

While Pontypool’s attacking strength was hardly overwhelming during the ten minutes that Dowlais spent wounded down to fourteen men, their continued pressure eventually proved to be too much, earning them their third try of the match just as the sin-bin period was about to come to an end, albeit an unconverted one.

But although conceding a try in such a manner undoubtedly stung a little, the score was still at 33-19, with Dowlais still at a relatively comfortable fourteen point lead with around a quarter of the match remaining.

But the boys didn’t allow themselves to get complacent, as they soon rushed straight back into the Pontypool twenty-two to send their score soaring even higher.

As the match’s remaining time closed in on the single digits, they broke through with their sixth try, albeit an unconverted one, bringing the score to 38-19.

And as if that wasn’t enough, straight after that one and only a few phases past the subsequent kick-off, Dowlais did it again, with an excellent bit of running from Nathan Pritchard netting Dowlais their seventh and final try of the match.

After one last conversion from Conor Murphy, the score-board came to a rest at its final position of 45-19.

Although Pontypool put up a valiant effort in the final stretch to at least get a bonus point out of the game with a fourth try – an effort helped by Dowlais landing themselves with quite a few more yellow cards – their efforts were ultimately foiled a last bit of mighty Dowlais defence, bringing the game to a decisive bonus point victory. Final score, 45-19 to Dowlais.

Overall, while not quite as decisive as their previous bout against Pontypool, scoring a little bit less on their end and letting a few more tries in on the visitors’ end, this week’s performance was still a great one overall.

Dowlais’ attacking front was excellent all around, with their grand total of seven tries boasting some very impressive plays and bits of ingenuity to get them there, along with a few classic brute-force drives.

While their defensive front was a little bit patchier than their away victory against Pontypool, their attacking efforts were so strong that those slip-ups didn’t really matter, with the opposition not even getting a bonus point to show for their efforts in the end.

The same could also be said for the usual Dowlais penalty count, as even though a good number of opportunities were spoiled by a reckless mistake, so many opportunities got through in the end that they didn’t really matter.

In a very rare occurrence, Dowlais didn’t concede a single point from a penalty either, with all nineteen of Pontypool’s points coming from tries. Although, if I could pose a bit of conjecture, that’s more likely because their lead was so great for most of the match that Pontypool simply didn’t see any point going for them, likely electing to go for touch and some tries instead.

But regardless of whether or not their penalties had an effect on the eventual result, I would like to draw some special attention to the yellow cards that Dowlais received, specifically the number of them.

In the final minutes, as they attempted to defend against the visitors’ last assault, they were struck with several yellows over the course of just a few minutes, leaving them quite a few men down by the end of the match.

While this numbers difference didn’t amount to anything in the end, the sheer number of men that Dowlais had sent off was more than a little bit unnerving, and introduced a number of openings that could have potentially been disastrous in a match with a tighter score gap in the final minutes. As such, I think it’s safe to say that the boys would be wise to be a bit more careful in the future, especially in their next match.

But regardless, it was still a great, solid performance overall.

Let’s hope for some more of that excellent attacking prowess next week, when Dowlais face Talywain away.


There doesn't appear to be any tagged photos.

Upload and Tag Photos