Bedwas v Pooler 7th April 2012
Robinson a star as Pooler do the double
Bedwas 12 Pontypool 25
Monday 9th April 2012 - South Wales Argus
Pontypool’s dynamic centre Dan Robinson brought his team back to winning ways when he crossed for two of their three tries in this deserved 25-12 double victory over Bedwas at the Bridge Field.
It was Pooler’s first Premiership win after a run of defeats against Neath, Swansea and Aberavon.
But Robinson, who with co-centre Max Woodward was impressive in defence and attack, spoiled a good day in the third minute of injury time when he was shown a red card for a spear tackle.
Robinson’s touchdowns came after 17 minutes and 45 minutes – the first following a smart raid down the right initiated by outside half Tom Hancock and the second resulting from a kick and chase to the home line, referee Neil Perkins eventually awarding the try after consulting with a touch judge.
Right wing Gareth Williams pounced for the third try a few minutes later.
Full back Geraint O’Driscoll added the icing on the cake by converting two of the tries and kicking two good penalty goals. It was only after Pontypool, who were 5-0 ahead at the interval, had established a commanding 22 -0 lead in the third quarter that Bedwas shook themselves out of their chapter of errors. Number eight Deri Mattravers crossed for a corner try which outside half Richard Powell converted before full back Stuart Thomas burst over for a further unconverted try after 70 minutes.
There were some big hits going in from both teams and just before Robinson was sent off, home centre Darren Ryan was also shown a red card for punching an opponent.
Outstanding in the Pooler pack was dogged lock Rhys Bowen, ably supported by number eight and captain James Thomas, while inside half Andrew Quick was also prominent.
Bedwas’ slow start was compounded in the 34th minute when their lock Gareth Williams had to be stretchered from the field with a dislocated ankle.
As expected, Bedwas fought like tigers in the closing stages but they had given Pooler too much of a headstart to have a realistic chance of pulling the game out of the fire.
Pontypool beat Bedwas 16-6 at Pontypool Park on Boxing Day.
Their final two league games are at home against Newport on Saturday and Llanelli on April 21. Pontypool head coach James Chapron said after the match: “Although there is a lot of uncertainty about what is going to happen at Pontypool, we as players and coaches have set ourselves the target of ending the campaign on a high note. This performance showed that all the players wanted to work hard for each other. This is always a difficult place to come and chalk up a victory but we showed exactly what we could do.”
Steve Law, Bedwas coach, said: “We made some silly mistakes that allowed Pontypool to punish us hard.
“It was only in the last quarter that we managed to put some shape on to our game. Clearly, they wanted the win much more than we did.”
Bedwas: S. Thomas; D. Franci, R. Howells (D. Humphries 40), D. Ryan, T. Watkin; R. Powell, J. Evans ( R. Wood 59); M. Pettit, R. Hutcherson ( K Crawford 59), D. Good (K. Jenkins 51), G. Williams (B. Lampitt 40+3), R. Cadman, P. Sargent, capt ( R. Carter 51), S. Grainger and D. Mattravers.
Tries: D. Mattravers, S. Thomas. Con: R. Powell Pontypool: G. O’Driscoll; G Williams, D. Robinson, M. Woodward (C. Macey 64), R. Budina; T. Hancock, A. Quick ( M. Thomas 65); L. Davies (J. Jeune 68), R. Prosser (H. Gustaffson 63), N. Blake,R. Bowen (K. Smith 69), D. Critchley, J. Thomas, capt, T. Organ and I Jones (C. Attwell 60).
Tries: D. Robinson (2), G. Williams. Pens: G. O’Driscoll ( 2) Cons: O’Driscoll (2) Referee: Neil Perkins (Pontypridd).
Argus star man: Dan Robinson