Caernarfon RFC | Women 40 - 14 Pontyclun RFC | Women

Match Report
24 April 2017 / Team News

Women’s Super Cup. (Semi Final)


Caernarfon Ladies  40      Pontyclun Ladies  14

This was an absorbing and highly competitive eighty minutes of rugby with those who took to the field giving their all in an energy sapping encounter that finally saw Caernarfon draw clear to gain their place in the coveted Super Cup Final against Swansea Ladies on Saturday, May,20th.

Caernarfon, playing up slope, opened strongly and retained ball well with numerous individuals like Jess Kavanagh Williams, Beth Davies and Elen Evans keeping the Pontyclun rearguard on their toes. Indeed it took an excellent tackle by fullback  Shaunni Davies to prevent Evans opening the Cofi account early on. Later, Rafiuke Taylor's timely intervention prevented Davies from setting off on another clear run to the try line.

If the Cofis could be faulted during the first quarter, it was the fact that recycled possession was constantly slow, meaning that Pontyclun had just enough time to regroup defensively so as to contain the next wave of attack.

Pontyclun with the little ball at their disposal during the first half used their props Cara Hope and Cerys Hale to good effect but they very rarely entered the danger zone thanks to effective tackling by the likes of Elin Royle. Flanker Meg Oaten was also impressive as a link player for Pontyclun covering every blade of grass with her seemingly magnetic link to ball. However against the run of play it was the visitors who opened the scoring as an offside call in midfield afforded Brogan Jones a penalty attempt that was very cleanly struck with nearly thirty minutes played.

Caernarfon were however unfazed and continued to charge towards the try line via their robust forwards and tenacious backs. Captain Emma Edwards as always was leading by example, ably supported by prop Brea Leung with Rachel Taylor displaying the instinctive knack of always being in the right place. With half time beckoning a loose kick out of defence was fielded by Beth Davies who sprinted through midfield and on being tackled offered a speculative offload that, happily for Caernarfon, fell into the hands of Rachel Taylor who ran in from ten meters to give the Cofis the slenderest of halftime leads after having been so dominant territorially.  

The opening of the second period was in complete contrast to what had occurred at kick off. On this occasion it was Pontyclun who kept possession and asked questions of the Cofi defence. Jess Pritchard was orchestrating proceedings well from her scrum half base, a task she upheld with aplomb throughout. Soon, with another Brogan Jones penalty effort, Pontyclun had regained the lead and were looking as if they could build on the effective attacking platform that they had formed.

The Cofis though had other ideas, with Elen Evans a constant threat with ball in hand. It was her gain line breaking charge, taken on by Jess Kavanagh Williams that brought the penalty that, when quickly taken, led to Rachel Taylor finding the required gap  to charge over and afford Beth Davies the added conversion. Pontyclun though were back in contention soon when Brogan Jones slotted her third penalty following a high though not dangerous tackle.

Caernarfon decided to return to what had began paying dividends with the whole team at hand to charge at the heart of the Pontyclun rearguard. Slowly they were ensuring quicker ball and finding active support runners at hand. A rumble into the danger zone resulted in another penalty and on this occasion Taylor's commitment to the cause was unquestioned as she took the tap and obliterated the awaiting Pontyclun trio to score her third try, that with another Davies conversion, gave the Cofis some breathing space.

A possible riposte from speedy winger Rafiuke Taylor was thankfully halted by covering  Jess Kavanagh Williams and the counter attack from Beth Davies gained some forty meters before Taylor and prominent enforcer Nicky Crawford contained enough defenders to allow Elen Evans the gap required to ghost through and score a try deserving of  her commitment to the cause. Beth Davies was again on target with her conversion attempt.

Evans continued to stretch the Pontyclun defence and following another red zone incursion Hannah Hughes, on her recent return to competitive rugby, found a gap to score the Cofi's fifth try that was again converted by Davies.

Pontyclun were however still a proud and determined bunch and fought their way back courageously and intelligently. Hooker Eve Jones who upheld the art of hooking effectively worked well in conjunction with Pritchard to put pressure on the Cofis and the scrum half's heads up play brought her a deserved try when she snipped from close range. Other forays found the likes of replacement Sara Patchett in uncharitable mood.

As the game was drawing to a close one noticed that the continuous work rate of all six front row forwards was to be highly commended and it was therefore fitting that young Caernarfon prop Gwenllian Pyrs came of age when she collected on the twenty five metre line and drove with purpose through the rearguard to score a fine individual try. Beth Davies brought the points total to forty with another conversion.

The final now awaits and Caernarfon would also wish to congratulate fellow North Walians Abergele who will also feature in the Bowl final after their semi final victory away at Porth Quins by 22 points to 12.


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