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20 January 2017 / Team News

BRIDGEND SPORTS 16 PORTHCAWL 19

This top of the table clash was always going to be a closely fought affair and so it turned out to be as the Seaweeds snatched it at the death.

On a miserable but dry afternoon, with both sides hungry for Rugby, put everything into the match but Porthcawl drew first blood when Josh White kicked an early penalty, despite slipping as he connected and the ball bouncing over off the upright, for nil-3.

Minutes later he popped over another simpler kick as Sports gave away a soft penalty, 30 metres out for nil-6.

Sports were having the better of the territory and when full-back Josh Davies pulled it back with a penalty of his own and 3-6, as Porthcawl fell offside at the breakdown. The heavy pitch was already proving difficult to negotiate at times but to their credit both sides kept hammering away in turn, with the packs especially well-matched.

White’s third penalty stretched it to 3-9 yet back came Davies with his second goal from fully 42 metres and 6-9 to keep up the hunt.

The Seaweeds managed a crucial score just before the break as the Sports lost control of the ball whilst trying to break through and Leon McNally hacked the ball on for Porthcawl, for his team-mate wing Jake Thomas to grab the touchdown and the first try. White’s brilliant conversion out of the mud wide out on the left, made it 6-16 at half-time.

Sports drew the first blood in the second half as they capitalised on some good driving play with Davies again slotting the penalty for 9-16 as Porthcawl’s Mattie Davies saw a yellow card, as Sport sniffed blood.

Indeed, when Sports did what Porthcawl did before the break, hacking through the loose ball for the try after White had his intended clearance kick charged down, converted by Davies, at 16-apiece the match really could have gone either way, with the light fading badly in the descending gloom.

It was close to the end of the match, with some ten minutes of injury time played, that White became villain-turned-hero, as his pack surged forward with a final flourish and earned the penalty. As he stepped up, he again lost his footing but the ball sailed between the sticks to grab the winning points, as Sports supporters groaned in anguish at the decision.

This was a well-contested and often compelling match, which was a credit to both sides, clearly the two best sides in the division currently. Porthcawl can look forward to four home matches during January, when they could capitalise on gathering valuable points, starting with the visit of Glyncorrwg on 7th January.    

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