Glamorgan Silver Ball
Virginia Park-Caerphilly RFC
Weds 11th April 2007
Unbeaten Div 5 SE winners Rhiwbina earned their place in the Silver Ball Semi Final with a fantastic win over Div 3 South West table toppers Heol y Cyw in a great game at Glamorgan Wanderers ground.
Today they faced Penallta who also top their Div 3 East League and have been unbeaten all season and such has been their meteoric rise in Welsh Rugby through the Leagues they are fancied to go all the way to Div 1 in the next few years.
Rhiwbina did not underestimate the task that faced them but as luck would have it had to do without 6 of the first team who were unavailable through injuries and holidays. It was a big ask for the players who stepped in but they were up for the task.
The game got off to a thunderous start and Rhiwbina more than held their own in the first quarter and put Penallta under severe pressure in the scrum with the Squirrels 8 pushing them back and were camped on the opposition line for some time and frustratingly being held up over the line or snagged just short but unable to get the score they deserved. Salty narrowly missed a difficult penalty before Penallta began to get back in the game and scored from a set piece lineout move and got the conversion.
As the half wore on Penallta began to find more openings and they scored 3 more tries-one a length of the field kick and chase for their flying wing and another for their outside half who went through a gap following quick ruck ball and another from quick handling along the back line to lead 26-0 at half time having only missed one conversion. They disrupted the Rhiwbina lineout causing us lots of problems and not allowing us to build up a head of steam and disrupting us at the breakdown.
With Rhiwbina having to take off flanker Ed Hampson following a injury in a desperate last gasp cover tackle Nicky Diamond came on as a replacement and got stuck into the opposition. It would have been easy for the Squirrels to have rolled over and died in the second half but to their great credit they dug in and restricted the opposition to one converted try and a penalty even after going down to 13 players after two debatable sin binnings. Some huge tackles were put in to deny the Penallta team time and time again.
Well done to Vince, Geraint, Birdy, Rhys, Richy Marshall and Nicky for stepping into the breach and well played the whole team for giving Penallta a very physical game.
All the Rhiwbina players deserve praise for not letting their heads go down against much higher quality opponents who outclassed them on the night and who thoroughly deserved their win. The boys who came in as cover played with great distinction and deserve lots of praise as do the whole squad who did the Club proud on the night but were beaten by the better team and have no complaints about the result.
Penallta 36-0 Rhiwbina
A big thanks to our travelling fans who came up to shout us on-they boys were bitterly disappointed that they did not get a score to reward all your efforts but they did their best and appreciated all your support.
See you all at the
SA BRAIN EAST DISTRICT 1st TEAM CUP SEMI FINAL
Llandaff RFC Ground
Llanishen v Rhiwbina
Tuesday 17th April
Kick Off 6.15pm