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Wales give England a scare

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By Ian Golden at Stebonheath Park

ENGLAND won the annual under 16 international against Wales for the second year in a row but not without surviving a scare in the first half where Wales took a 12-6 lead.

The visitors took advantage of Welsh errors in the first half as well as a second half sin-bin, to give them a slightly flattering scoreline but a deserved win in a competitive game.

The English side, who fielded 15 Super League scholarship players in their 18-man squad, had the first charge forward with Harvey Barron having an early score chalked off for a forward pass.

And in their second attacking set of the game, Wales defended well, preventing a certain try when Jake Anderson was held up over the line.

But from their third attack, Coby Nicholl scored in the corner. Joe Charnock converted well.

Photo by Darren Harries

Wales levelled on 13 minutes. Josh Atkinson, who, four years ago this weekend, was scoring for Glantaf at Wembley in the Year 7 Champion Schools final, did the same for his country. Picking up a loose ball, he played a nice one-two and grounded in the corner. Kyle Huish converted.

Then the Welsh, who had just five Super League registered players, took the lead from the next attack. Ben Mayhew scored under the posts and Huish converted.

England got their second try on 24 minutes. A nice passing move sent Kaven Rothwell over but Charnock sliced the conversion wide.

They then regained the lead four minutes later after Nichol scooted over for his second of the day with Charnock converting.

Three minutes before half-time, Patrick O’Donovan ran through for England’s fourth try of the half which Charnock again improved.

A handling error gifted England a fifth right on the hooter through Daniel Moss which went unconverted, giving the visitors a 26-12 half-time lead.

Wales could have had the first try of the second half after a good attack, but Lucas Elliott mishandled under pressure as he looked to complete the move.

Instead it was England who further extended their lead through a Tom Nichilson-Watton try that Charnock converted.

Wales hit back in the tenth minute of the half through a skilful run by winger Jermarie Chatham. Huish failed to convert.

Photo by Darren Harries

But the nail in the coffin for Wales came when Lewis Pinder was sinbinned with 15 minutes to go.

England took advantage of the extra man straight away through a Daniel Moss try under the sticks that Lewis Camden converted.

They looked another score whilst Wales were depleted but, coupled with good Welsh defence and their own handling errors, couldn’t extended the lead further.

It was from one of those English mistakes that Wales could have got a try back right at the end but the English defence held out in a solid final set.

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Felinfoel win comfortably

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FELINFOEL continued their unbeaten start to the season on Saturday (Oct 5) as they beat Gowerton 23-0.

In a game played in difficult conditions both sides contributed to an open match with Felinfoel finally ending up comfortable winners.

Felinfoel took an early lead with a try from left wing Jordan Dunne converted by full back Aled Roberts.

Roberts added a further two penalties before the break making the score at half time 13 – nil.

Photo by Darren Harries

The weather conditions deteriorated in the second half and it was not until the 20th minute that Felinfoel increased their lead with a further penalty from Roberts.

As Felinfoel added further pressure, live wire wing Dunne went in for his second try again well converted from wide out by Roberts.

Gowerton came close to scoring at the end, but strong defence by Felinfoel prevented them from scoring.

Felinfoel now look forward to round two of the WRU Plate competition when they entertain Skewen on Saturday (Oct 12).

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Cherries hold off Penygroes

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Furnace United 18-9 Penygroes

FURNACE United welcomed Penygroes to Cae Castell on Saturday (Oct 5) and after two attritional battles last season this game was highly anticipated.

The field conditions were excellent even though there was a little drizzle throughout.

The game started at a frantic pace with Furnace taking the early initiative resulting in a try from second row Andrew Evans after five minutes. Daf Green slotted the conversion from out wide to make it 7-0 to the home side.

Five minutes later, from subsequent Penygroes pressure, they were able to score their first points of the game as the trusted boot of number 10 Christopher Powell slotted a penalty between the sticks.

Straight from the restart Furnace gained good field position and were awarded a penalty in front of the sticks.

Green added the three points to make it 10-3 to the home side.

Photo by Darren Harries

The rest of the first half saw Penygroes put pressure on the Furnace line but to no avail.

The first 25 minutes of the second half saw the visitors throw the kitchen sink at the Furnace line.

However, although some stern defence meant they weren’t able to cross the line, they did manage two further penalties from the boot of Powell to bring the score to 10-9.

Having defended for much of the half, Furnace looked to increase their lead and they marched up the field before Daf Green slotted a drop goal to make it 13-9 to the Cherries.

The last ten minutes saw Penygroes pressing again but without reward.

From the last play of the game, Furnace intercepted a loose pass and Centre Scott Davies galloped 60 metres down the paddock to cross and put the game to bed.

The conversion was missed but it mattered little as the Cherries earned an 18-9 victory.

On Saturday (Oct 12), both sides take a break from league action as they take part in the second round of the WRU Bowl.

Furnace are away to Cefn Cribbwr while Penygroes are at home to Abercarn.

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Burry Port stay in touch

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Burry Port Res 3-0 Evans & Williams Res

BURRY Port Reserves kept themselves in touch with the top two as they beat Evans and Williams Reserves 3-0 on Saturday (Oct 5).

A very even first half ended with Jamie Phillips heading home from a corner to make it 1-0 to Burry Port.

In the second half the home side played much better and were on top from the start going 2-0 up through Sam Saer.

They dominated for a spell but Evans and Williams came back strong and looked as if they might get one back.

Eventually the home side got their third through Ryan Owens to seal the win and all but end any hopes Evans and Williams had of getting back into the game.

Burry Port remain level on points with the top two with all three having won four of their five games so far this season.

On Saturday (Oct 12), Evans and Williams will look to bounce back when they take on Gorseinon Reserves.

The reserves do not have a game but Burry Port’s first team are in action in the first round of the West Wales Cup as they host Cwm Albion Colts.

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