Bargoed 31 Swansea 26

By: Paul Hopkins

 

A late Barney Nightingale try ensured the All Whites suffered a late defeat to rivals Bargoed in a thrilling encounter.

 

A quick tap penalty by scrum half Tom Ham saw the Whites counterattack from their own twenty-two, but winger Ashley Norton picked up a loose pass and shrugged off a couple of tackles to score the opening try. Fly half Josh Prosser converted.

 

Winger Joe Jenkins collected the restart for the visitors, but Bargoed defended well and a huge hit forced hooker Paul John to hold on after the tackle.

 

Hooker Wade Langley charged through the middle, but found himself isolated, giving fly half Phil Jones an opportunity to kick deep into Bargoed territory. Lock James Ratti collected the lineout, but centre Callum Carson’s chip through sailed into touch.

 

Flanker Callum Bowden came within inches of scoring after fielding a loose Bargoed lineout and support arrived quickly for John to crash over for a try under the posts. Jones converted.

 

Swansea were straight back on the attack with a superb break by Carson, who found Jones in support, but the move lost impetus and the home side were awarded a reliving penalty.

 

The home backs upped the pace with Norton using his power out wide to set up an attack, but Prosser’s chip through beat the chasing Norton into touch.

 

Jones found touch on the twenty-two with a penalty and Ratti rose high to take the lineout, sending the Whites’ pack mauling forward. The home defence had no option but to illegally bring down the maul so Jones chipped to touch again. This time the visitors spread the ball wide and Ratti charged over to score. Jones converted.

 

On the stroke of half time centre Darren Humphries made a half break from an advancing scrum, but flanker Grant Rogers became isolated and held on after the tackle.

 

Half-time:-   Bargoed   7   Swansea   14

 

A hurried clearance by centre R Rhys Williams gifted Bargoed a penalty and Prosser chipped to the corner, but winger Duane Dyer failed to hold onto a pass.

 

Ratti was penalised for holding on after the tackle and Prosser cut the deficit to just four points.

 

Winger Ryan Griffiths strayed in front of a high kick so Prosser kicked deep into the Swansea twenty-two. Replacement hooker Rhys Buckley superbly pealed off a rolling maul to score. Prosser converted.

 

Another powerful maul by the home pack was stopped a metre short of the line, but Bargoed remained patient and prop John Lavender squeezed over for a try. Prosser curled the conversion through the posts.

 

The Whites hit back when lock Jay Williams raced through a gap in the home defence and threw a scoring pass out wide to full back Luke Griffiths. Jones missed the conversion.

 

Swansea retook the lead after Jay Williams and Bowden ran at the Bargoed defence at pace, before replacement number eight Charlie Davies picked up ball at the base of the ruck to score. Jones converted.

 

But the home side struck with a few minutes left on the clock when centre Nightingale sprinted through a couple of tackles to score in the corner. Prosser converted.

 

Next up for Bargoed is a trip to Ebbw Vale while Swansea host title chasers Cardiff.

 

Full-time:-   Bargoed   31   Swansea   26

 

Bargoed:

 

Tries:-   Ashley Norton (7), Grant Rogers (56), John Lavender (61), Rhys Buckley (78)

Cons:-   Josh Prosser (8, 57, 62, 79)

Pens:-   Josh Prosser (52)

 

Swansea:

 

Tries:-   Paul John (24), James Ratti (40+1), Luke Griffiths (64), Charlie Davies (69)

Cons:-   Phil Jones (25, 40+2, 70)

 

Match facts:

 

Venue:-   Bargoed Park

Referee:-   Simon Mills

Weather:-   Sunny, 11C

Man of the match:-   Louis Blacker

Attendance:-   300

 

Bargoed team:

 

15 Calum Jones

14 Duane Dyer (rep: Jordan Purcell 72)

13 Barney Nightingale

12 Darren Humphries

11 Ashley Norton

10 Josh Prosser

9 James Leadbeater

1 John Lavender (rep: Rhys Morgan 72)

2 Wade Langley (rep: Mike Kavanagh 44)

3 Alex Gardner-Key

4 Geraint Edmunds (rep: Ashley Gibson 72)

5 Adam Powell (rep: James Locke 26)

6 Lewis Johnson (rep: Matt Thomas 48)

7 Grant Rogers

8 Louis Blacker ©

 

Replacements:

 

16 Matt Bancroft

17 Jordan Purcell

18 Ashley Gibson

19 Matt Thomas

20 James Locke

21 Mike Kavanagh

22 Rhys Buckley

23 Rhys Morgan

 

Swansea team:

 

15 Luke Griffiths

14 Ryan Griffiths

13 R Rhys Williams

12 Callum Carson

11 Joe Jenkins (rep: Mike Evans 41)

10 Phil Jones

9 Tom Ham (rep: Chris Morgans 58)

1 Tom Sloane

2 Paul John (rep: Garin Lloyd 65)

3 Richard Murphy (rep: Alun Dew 40+4-41, 58)

4 James Ratti

5 Jay Williams

6 Duane Eager

7 Callum Bowden

8 Jon Fox © (rep: Charlie Davies 50)

 

Replacements:

 

16 Garin Lloyd

17 Jack Powell

18 Alun Dew

19 Sam Kiley

20 Charlie Davies

21 Chris Morgans

22 Steffen Williams

23 Mike Evans

 

TEAM P W D L PF PA PTS
Merthyr 30 23 0 7 885 593 117
Cardiff 30 22 1 7 991 660 111
Pontypridd 30 22 0 8 1015 580 110
Llandovery 30 21 1 8 856 551 104
Ebbw Vale 30 20 1 9 762 594 95
Aberavon 30 18 2 10 698 603 90
Newport 30 17 2 11 759 700 88
Rygbi Gogledd Cymru 1404 30 14 1 15 852 650 85
Swansea 30 16 0 14 674 594 81
Carmarthen Quins 30 13 1 16 637 584 71
Bridgend Ravens 30 12 0 18 689 714 66
Llanelli 30 12 1 17 679 723 63
Bedwas 30 12 1 17 681 830 62
Cross Keys 30 5 1 24 586 1093 36
Bargoed 30 6 0 24 576 1003 35
Neath 30 1 0 29 406 1274 3