Fixture

Ruthin RFC | 1st Team 34 - 27 Caereinion OBRA | 1st Team
Christopher Wyn Davies
Try 2
Ben Taylor
Try 1
Callum Andrew Bennett
Conversion 2
Penalty 5

Match Report
27 January 2015 / Team News

Ruthin 34 Cobra 27

It wasn’t pretty, skilful or convincing but it was a necessary. Ruthin returned to winning ways after five losses on the bounce. Starting well the Cae Ddol outfit started were 3-0 up after 6 minutes. Their dominant scrum forced the COBRA front row to stand up, penalty, Callum Bennett converted. However, as so often this season within 5 minutes the home side were facing a penalty for an offside infringement, which could have so easily equalled the score. Ruthin started with the structure that has been their hallmark this season. COBRA’s game plan was unclear. They played with enthusiasm but failure to release ball then player resulted in three Ruthin penalties. The home team were 9-0 ahead after 20 minutes thanks to the ever-present but inconsistent boot of Bennett. The scrappy but determined play from the visitors appeared to unnerve the home team and in the 28th minute they were camped five metres from the Ruthin line. Using the unimaginative, yet effective pick and go tactic which often defines games at this level COBRA threatened the Ruthin line. After repeated warnings, referee Ryder gave second-row Harrison a yellow ten. The white line dog fight continued until a COBRA knock-on allowed Ruthin to clear. Two minutes later Ruthin were awarded a penalty on the COBRA 10 metre line. Bennett found touch, 8 metres out, Pedr Jones and Chris Lewis connected in a well functioning line-out and Deian Williams starting in the centre for the first time, broke through, flipping the ball up to the omnipresent Ben Taylor for a try under the posts. Bennett converted.

At 16-0 ahead Ruthin should have been thinking bonus point but neither confidence nor composure were in the air.  Continued high tempo pressure from COBRA saw Ruthin lose their structure and resort to unnecessary desperate decision making. Just on the break, a poor clearance kick allowed COBRA to get off the mark with an unconverted try wide out; the score 16-5.

After what sounded like a severe half-time talk from coach Rich Griffin, Ruthin came out of the blocks with renewed composure and energy. Within 5 minutes, patient phase play and good handling skills put marauding captain Chris (disco) Davies over wide out. Bennett converted a difficult kick to put the home team 18 points ahead at 23-5. The structure was short lived. On the 50th minute tapped penalty and drive put the COBRA wing over to make it 23-10. Four minutes later, a penalty to Ruthin made it 26-10. Game won – not at Cae Ddol. What happened next was unscripted but not unexpected by the faithful who have supported Ruthin this season. COBRA scored two converted tries in the next 10 minutes and with a full 20 minutes to play only two points separated the team with the score 26-24. With 10 minutes to go, second row Pete Harrison, the former Ruthin captain who has turned in some of the best lose performances of his career this year came of worst in a nasty clash of heads which required hospital repositioning of his nose. Three minutes later a Bennett penalty gave some welcome relief. A further try put the game safe at 34-24 but COBRA were not spent, scoring a late penalty to make the score 34-27. A win but Ruthin still need to find the confidence to accompany their undoubted commitment and skill.

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