Bridgend 20 RGC 8
Indigo Group Premiership
Saturday 12th March 2022
RGC fell to a disappointing defeat against a Bridgend end team who claimed their first win of the Indigo Group Premiership.
In the past couple of games the Gogs have started slowly but managed to finish the 80 minutes with a win, but today the poor start remained but the result did not follow, unlike previous games.
It was RGC that got the game going with a Danny Cross penalty in the opening minutes, and that was the only time they were in the lead as Ravens then claimed the opening try when Bridgend pack drove over and Rhydian Jenkins scored.
The home side's backline were benefiting from a good platform from both line out and scrum with scrum-half Davies having plenty of ball.
RGC’s penalty count was on the increase with a number of infringements, and it then led to Sam Rogers being given a yellow card.
Bridgend took full advantage with Paul Short kicking a penalty. Matters were made worse for the Gogs when on 15 minutes Cameron Ellis runs in from halfway, beating the outstretched arms of Efan Jones. Short hit then conversion to give his side a 15-3 lead.
As for RGC, it was a case of compounding error on error with knock-ons, kicks going out on the full making it impossible for them to gain any momentum in the game.
Danny Cross had a chance with a penalty, but he knocked it wide.
Sam Rogers returned to the field to level the player's numbers but minutes later they were reduced to 14 again when winger Zac Clow was yellowed for a deliberate knock-on.
The home side found themselves in the same position when scrum-half Dylan Davies was also yellow-carded for a deliberate knock-on.
RGC did create a chance after a well-worked lineout and Andrew Williams looked in for the try, but he couldn’t keep hold of the ball and knocked on at the line and went in at the break 12 points down.
Head Coach Ceri Jones rang the changes at halftime from the bench knowing his side needed a positive start to the 40 minutes ahead.
That start didn’t happen, as it was Bridgend that grabbed the try when centre Joe Gatt crossed the whitewash for his side’s final points of the game.
One of the Gogs replacements Dion Jones tried to spark some action into the game with a break but was well tackled in the home side's 22.
Brodie Coghlan worked some space to attack but it ended after Dion Jones spilt the ball in contact.
In what was probably RGC’s best period of the game the visitors went through multiple phases as the pack looked after the ball with Efan Jones controlling the play before Dion Jones spotted the gap to step in for the try.
Both sides looked for that next score and Bridgend had the chance, but Matthew Jones kicked his penalty wide.
RGC had given themselves a lot of work to do in regard to closing the scores, and every error was a costly one after they worked the ball out of their half looking to create an attacking opportunity a forward pass ended it.
The referee’s card was out again when both full-backs were given yellows – Bagshaw and Howley walked at the same time.
Another Gogs attack ended in a frustrating manner when they were pulled for crossing.
RGC put pressure on the Bridgend line and after several penalties, they looked like they were over the line, but again were stopped illegally and captain Zac O’Driscoll was sin-binned in the final seconds of the game.
As much as RGC put effort and work into the 2nd half, the damage was done in the opening 40 minutes and they were fully punished for it.