Swansea
2015/2016 SWALEC Championship
Swansea 39 v 38 RGC 1404
09 April 2016 - St Helen's, Swansea
Rygbi Gogledd Cymru 1404

Match Report

Swansea 39 RGC 1404 38

By Paul Hopkins

 

A last gasp drop goal from fly half Jac Wilson earned the All Whites a stunning victory over RGC 1404, clinching promotion to the Principality Premiership in the process.

 

In a match where the home forwards dominated and the North Walian backs were on top, Swansea trailed from six minutes until the tenth minute of added time, when Wilson’s boot secured a magnificent victory.

 

The All Whites threatened early on when Wilson made a break through the middle and chipped ahead, only for the chasing centre David Watts to lose possession over the try line.

 

The visitors responded almost straightaway as fly half James Lang turned on the pace from his own twenty-two, cutting through a bamboozled Swansea defence, before he handed a scoring pass to full back Afon Bagshaw. Lang converted.

 

The home side got lucky moments later when an unfortunate bounce wrong-footed the RGC defence and fell into the hands of full back Josh Flye. He fed hooker Paul John, who charged up to the line, before number eight Rory Gallagher picked up the ball to score. Flye missed the conversion.

 

The North Wales side hit back though when second row men Maredydd Francis and Sean Lonsdale made forays into Swansea territory, creating a platform for centre Tiaan Loots to touch down out wide. Lang missed the conversion.

 

Try number three for RGC came from a counterattack as Bagshaw raced clear on the wing and chipped ahead for Lang to race clear and score. Lang converted.

 

A flash of brilliance by winger Andrew Claypole saw him sprint past a number of defenders into the twenty-two, finding fellow wing Will Lewis in support, only for the visitors to steal the ball. The respite was only temporary though as they were driven back behind their own goal line.

 

From the scrum five a powerful drive by the All Whites’ pack forced the RGC front row upwards, leaving referee Wayne Davies no option but to award a penalty try. Flye converted.

 

The Whites were penalised for foul play at the lineout, but Lang missed his effort at goal.

 

Loots and Lonsdale threatened the Swansea defence with half breaks, and the home side were forced offside. RGC opted to change their goal kicker and scrum half Alex Schwarz made no mistake with his effort at the sticks.

 

The visitors scored a bonus point try when Bagshaw beat scrum half Rhodri Wells for pace on the wing to collect a chip ahead and touch down in the corner. Schwarz missed the conversion.

 

The RGC backs continued to run riot and it took a thumping tackle by prop Ryan Thomas to turn over possession and set the tone for an unlikely Whites comeback.

 

Half-time:-   Swansea   12   RGC 1404   27

 

The home side responded early in the second half when the pack mauled their way to the line from a lineout with Gallagher claiming the try. Flye converted.

 

The Swansea forwards were then penalised for entering a ruck from the side as the visitors embarked on an unstoppable maul to the line. Schwarz kicked the penalty.

 

Swansea cut the gap to just eight points with a Flye penalty goal after the RGC pack were caught offside at the ruck.

 

Schwarz kicked another penalty goal though after the home side killed a dangerous attack.

 

A huge scrum by the All Whites close to the line earned them a second penalty try, which Flye converted to bring his side back to within a score.

 

The visitors looked to have sealed victory thanks to a 12 man maul to the line that resulted in a try for number eight Zygimantas Radzius. Schwarz took too long over the conversion and dragged it wide under pressure from the chasing Claypole.

 

Three minutes into injury time flanker Mike Sully picked up the ball from a ruck to race past a tired RGC defence to score. Flye converted to set up a grandstand finish.

 

With the clock ticking down, RGC failed to clear the ball as nerves kicked in and a dropped pass under no pressure gave Swansea a scrum close to the line.

 

In the game’s last play the Whites went through about 15 phases, with replacement flanker Jon Fox close to scoring. The RGC defence remained firm until Swansea got the ball out to Wilson, who dropped back in the pocket and kicked a dramatic drop goal to clinch victory.

 

Next up for Swansea is a trip to Bargoed, which could go some way to deciding the destiny of RGC’s promotion hopes. The North Walian side will face already relegated Llanharan at Parc Eirias in their next fixture.

 

Full time:-   Swansea   39   RGC 1404   38

 

Swansea scorers:

 

Tries:-   Rory Gallagher (8, 48), Penalty try (33, 67), Mike Sully (80+3)

Cons:-   Josh Flye (34, 49,  68, 80+4)

Pens:-   Josh Flye (55)

DGs:-   Jac Wilson (80+10)

 

RGC 1404 scorers:

 

Tries:-   Afon Bagshaw (7, 40), Tiian Loots (18), James Lang (24), Zygimantas Radzius (73)

Cons:-   James Lang (8, 25)

Pens:-   Alex Schwarz (39, 52, 63)

 

Match facts:

 

Venue:-   St Helen’s, Swansea

Referee:-   Wayne Davies

Weather:-   Sunny, 7C

Man of the match:-  Rory Gallagher

Attendance:-   300

 

Swansea team:

 

15 Josh Flye

14 Andrew Claypole

13 Jedd Evans

12 David Watts (rep: Liam Popham 77)

11 Will Lewis

10 Jac Wilson

9 Rhodri Wells (rep: Matthew Aubrey 68)

1 Richard Murphy

2 Paul John (rep: Ricky Guest 15)

3 Ryan Thomas (rep: Mitchell Walsh 79)

4 Gavin Ronan

5 Tudor Hughes (rep: Jon Fox 7)

6 Jack Perkins

7 Mike Sully

8 Rory Gallagher

 

Replacements:

 

16 Mitchell Walsh

17 Ricky Guest

18 Jon Fox

19 Matthew Aubrey

20 Liam Popham

 

RGC 1404 team:

 

15 Afon Bagshaw

14 Sam Jones

13 Danny Cross

12 Tiaan Loots

11 Carwyn ap Myrddin (rep: Josh Leach 60)

10 James Lang (rep: Tom Hughes 46)

9 Alex Schwarz

1 Tom Hughes (rep: Joe Simpson 76)

2 Evan Yardley (rep: Rhys Williams 68)

3 Ian Williams

4 Maredydd Francis (c)

5 Sean Lonsdale

6 Kelvin Davies

7.Meilir Parry (rep: Huw Worthington 52)

8 Zygimantas Radzius

 

Replacements:

 

16 Rhys Williams

17 Joe Simpson

18 Huw Worthington

19 Josh Leach

20 Tom Hughes

  

Attendance: 300

Official : Wayne Davies (Wales)

Swansea RGC 1404
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