Konica Minolta Cup Round 1
Rhiwbina entertained Division 2 West team Penclawdd at a wet and drizzly Caedelyn park in the First round of the Konica Minolta Cup.
Even though the West Walians were 2 leagues above us the Squirrels fancied their chances of a cup upset and started the game off in superb fashion with a series of flowing attacks that eventually led to try for veteran second row Steve Neal
The try went unconverted and the Squirrels also missed 2 penalties to extend the lead further. Penclawdd finally started to get in the game and based their game around the big kicking full back and outside half who repeatedly pinned us back with huge kicks to the corners.
IIt was from one such kick that the visitors got a penalty in front of our post and instead of taking the kick decided to run and had the numbers to crash over for a try for their centre which was converted.
A further penalty on the half way line led to another 3 points for the full back followed by another converted try for the visitors after a kick and chase opened up the defence just before half time. Rhiwbina were struggling to get back into the game at this stage trailing 5-17 and the half time interval came at the right moment.
The second half started well for Rhiwbina who got a penalty in front of the posts which was slotted over by Richy Saltmarsh to reduce the deficit.
The fightback was on and then came a moment of pure magic as Rhiwbina scored on of the best tries ever seen at Caedelyn park which started deep in their own 22 where we turned over a Penclawdd attack and the ball was picked up by Captain James Huntley who started a counterattack that went across the backline with breathtaking handling and offloading from Ed Hampson, Jon Brinkworth, Mark Lee and Richy Saltmarsh before Paul Cooper entered the line at pace on the wing and broke through some tacklers to sweetly offload to Salty who had looped around and ran in the try-Quality Guys!
Unfortunately Murph couldn't nail the conversion and at 13-17 we were back in the game. To give Penclawdd great credit they then hit back with a good try for their winger following good handling along the back line to just get in at the corner that they failed to convert to stretch out to 13-22. Rhiwbina kept trying to attack from deep and Penclawdd took every opportunity to have a go at trying to put over penalty kicks at goal from all over the park but the score remained 13-22 at full time and Penclawdd were worthy winners and showed the value of a strong kicking game.
We wish Penclawdd all the best for the rest of the season and hope they have a good cup run.
Big thanks to Chucka and Tracey for helping out with the BBQ and refreshments and a big thanks to the supporters who braved the rain to cheer the lads on. That is the first home defeat for our First XV at Caedelyn since we lost 3-6 to Porth in the final league game of the 2005/06 Season.
'Come on the Squirrels!!!'