Birchgrove RFC | 1st Team 27 - 9 Porthcawl RFC | 1st Team
Robert Green
Try 1
Josh Key
Try 2
Mathew Edwards
Conversion 2
Penalty 1
Lewis Cox
Try 1

Match Report
27 January 2019 / Team News



Birchgrove kicked off today’s encounter with Porthcawl into driving rain and a howling Gale which didn’t lend itself to the purist’s definition of a good game of Rugby. Eighty minutes later with a four try bonus 27 – 9 victory in the bag and a demolition job done on traditionally strong opponents the players and staff must be delighted with another job well done.

Giving an early indication that the atrocious conditions may play a major part in the tactical thinking of the day the home forwards made steady progress up field drawing a defensive error from the visitors. No 10 Matthew Edwards stepped up to put the first points on the board a penalty 3 – 0.

Porthcawl though had the same idea and they in turn with the assistance of the wind pushed play back in to the home half. A naive  blocking manoeuvre by the home forwards incurred the wrath of the referee and presented Josh White with an easy opportunity to level the score 3 -3.White was again on target from a second penalty 3 -6 and almost made it three on the trot but his  third attempt fell just short.

Despite these self inflicted setbacks Birchgrove were actually looking the better side. The tight scrum was firing well and totally outmuscling their opponents. The loose forwards were also on song with the usual dynamics from stylish No 8 Josh Key allied to the lung bursting drives of Liam Richards, Scott Beard and Rob Green were knocking the visitors back in to their own territory.

Add to this the astute game management of half backs Edwards and the live wire Rob Scrine and it was only a matter of time before a breakthrough would come. And so it did just before half time when the faithful had almost settled for a 3 point turnaround deficit against the wind,forward pressure again brought a penalty reward. Scrine took the initiative and  burst off in the direction of the Porthcawl line with universal support from the pack Rob Green was able to get over for  the first try converted by Edwards and a deserved 10 -6 half time lead.

With the wind in the second half Birchgrove were soon on the attack again but it was Porthcawl who were first to score, a third successful penalty from White 10 – 9.

The recovery was short lived though as from a high Matthew Edwards kick which I think almost touched the low flying rain clouds still circling the pitch, there was wholesale panic in the Porthcawl defence. From the ensuing attacking scrum Josh Key picked up from the base of the scrum, Scrine carried and two short phases later Key was able to finish of the move off with our second try 15 – 9

Birchgrove now looked well in command of the situation and continued in the same tactical vein looking to play the game in the opposition half and taking as few risks as possible. Try number three was to come again from the deadly back of the scrum duo Scrine and Key. The scrum half was the provider when once again his alertness caught the Porthcawl defence napping as his short penalty took him 25 metres or so in to enemy territory. Trusty shadow Key was on his shoulder every step of the way to gratefully receive the perfectly timed off load and go over for his second try of the day 20 -9.

With a try bonus point in their sights for the second week running Birchgrove continued to dominate up front and manage the game stylishly to maintain an almost permanent foothold in the opposition half. The reward came in well proven style. With the team now going through the phases with ease and careful combinations of close passing and power the away line was soon in sight.  Recycled ball found its way in to the hands of replacement back row man Lewis Cox whose only mantra is “Go Forward” and despite the close attention of the Porthcawl defence the referee adjudged a legitimate touchdown for the fourth , bonus point, try converted by Edwards 27 -9.


The game , over as a contest, saw Porthcawl  have a good go at restoring pride but the home defence kept out the visitors , a feat in itself , to prevent what are traditionally a free scoring outfit  from breaching your line.


Well done lads, on to Taibach next week, keep it going and the “P” word will look after itself !



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