RGC 42 Pontypridd 3
Saturday 11th March 2023
High Tempo, accurate passing, great running lines summed up the opening 40 minutes at Stadiwm CSM.
Joseph Scrivens opened the score with a penalty before the attacking onslaught gave RGC the 4 bonus point tries in 16 minutes.
Sam Williams claimed the first after the Gogs were camped on the Ponty line before he crashed over. Dion Jones hit the extras.
Efan Jones was conducting play and his backline were moving the ball from left to right creating space, resulting in Rhys Tudor taking advantage to touch down in the corner. Again Dion Jones was on target with the conversion.
Danny Cross was making inroads with ball in hand, causing problems for Ponty, and the attacking intent was clear to see.
Afon Bagshaw was next to score when Dion Jones and Danny Cross combined to set up the captain to dart in. Jones again was successful with the conversion.
If that try was good, the bonus the points was liquid rugby when Dion Jones and Harri Evans moved the ball well before a Sam Earl Jones break to set up Rhys Tudor. Dion Jones was again on point with the conversion.
As expected Ponty offered more in attack in the 2nd half and RGC had to defend in numbers to keep them out, and they did that time and time again.
Pontypridd were reduced to 14 men, when Sam Earl Jones kicked ahead but was illegally tackled by Tom Harper.
RGC took advantage of the extra man and Sam Earl-Jones grabbed try number 5 before the boot of Dion Jones nailed the extras.
As much as Efan Jones and Danny Cross excelled with ball in hand, they both worked hard when the visitors made a break but Jones made a superb covering tackle before Cross won the turnover.
Ponty had a good spell with the ball and tested the RGC defence but no matter what they did, RGC pushed them back. Bodies, limbs and the kitchen sink were put in front of every carry, and in the end Delwyn Jones cleared with the boot.
RGC looked to work another score down the wing but replacement Niko Matawalu was given the yellow card.
The Gogs were looking strong in the scrum, and the visitors were losing both the arm wrestle and their discipline with the game interrupted with skirmishes.
Both sides were down to 14 men when Rhys Tudor and Logan McIntosh were sent to the sin bin.
As the clock ticked down and the sleet fell RGC turned the screw and Delwyn Jones collected the kick to touch down for try number 6. Sam Rogers added the 2 points to make it 42-3.
Head Coach Ceri Jones -
“We knew last week that it was an uncharacteristic performance, with the errors we made.
I thought today we showed what we were capable of with the accuracy, pressure and pushing Pontypridd back.
In the 2nd half, they put us under huge pressure, with that 20 phases and we defended well to keep them out. Our attitude to keep them to a 3-point score shows our attitude to defend.
We are in healthy position squad wise with the players competing for starting places – especially with the semi-final next.
Billy, Bryn and Ilan are all competing in the back row, and then you look at the centre with Danny/Delwyn/Harri and Matt all looking for 2 spots in the starting 15.
It was also good to see Osian and Charlie get more game time and that Premiership experience will be of huge benefit.
To be successful you need more than 15 players and for us having the players competing for us is good.