LAST Saturday saw Penarth RFC Youth team start their league campaign for the 2017 -2018 season with a overwhelming victory away at a depleted Canton RFC Youth side.

Having battled through the Cardiff City football traffic at Leckwith for the 2.30pm kick off, the Penarth teams preparation for the start of the game was a little disrupted when the match referee was also delayed when caught in traffic at Newport. This meant the Penarth boys had an elongated warm up at Jubilee Park whilst waiting for the match official to arrive with an eventual delayed kick off of 2.50pm.

Unfortunately, the Canton team also struggled to get a full team out, fielding only 13 players, which resulted in the game being played with passive scrums from the start.

It was always therefore going to be an uphill battle for the Canton boys against a strong Penarth Unit and despite some brave defensive tackling it was only 10 minutes into the game when the Penarth boys opened up the score with a try from full back Harry Williams.

From the resulting re start kick off, strong runs from props Geraint Williams and Josh James supported by second row Will Parsons saw the ball immediately return into the Canton Half and flanker Tom Marsh crossing the line, only to be called back by the referee for a forward pass.

The resulting clearance from the Canton 22 metre line saw Penarth wing Mike Halligan make a storming run and following interplay between centres George Roberts and Aron Arthur, it saw Halligan put in the clear to score in the corner, to increase the score to 12 points nil after 12 minutes.

Within only a matter of five minutes, the Penarth boys again powered back into the Canton half and despite some very well organised fan defence from the Canton team, Penarth number eight Sam Sullivan, standing out in the back line, drove the ball forward and offloading to flanker Ellis Smith created the space for second row Alex Shore to score under the posts. Converted by outside Half Joe Williams, the Penarth boys were now in complete control at 19 points to nil.

Shore also continued to control the line outs for the Penarth eight, and regularly won both his own ball and steal the ball from the Canton throw in to allow the Penarth back line, being fed by Scrum Half Morgan Rees, to continue the onslaught with further tries for Luke Kean-Adams, Harry Williams and Aron Arthur.

With outside half Joe Williams also adding a try before half time, the Penarth boys went into the break 39-0 in the lead.

The strong lead allowed coaches to place all eight Penarth subs onto the pitch at half time and the opportunity for Matt Hocking, Hugo Holmes, Matt Rogers, Tom Fazackerley, Yaz Ghandour and Toby Dyer to make their first league appearance for the Penarth Youth Team. With the experience of Ben Jones coming on at full back and Gruff Shewring at scrum half, within 15 minutes it saw further tries for Luke Kean -Adams, Gruff Shewring to take the final score to 53 points to nil.

It was a great start to the defence of the league by the Penarth Youth team and equally It was a brave display by a depleted Canton team who never gave up in their effort to play a good standard of rugby throughout the game and in the traditional great spirit of rugby. There is no doubt that with further players joining the Canton squad it will become stronger as the season progresses,

Penarth RFC Youth continue with their league games this Saturday when they play host to Pentyrch RFC Youth at the Athletic field with a 2.30pm kick off.