By Peter Weston

THIS was, finally, a return to full-contact competitive rugby, 15-a-side, scrums and all that goes with it.

It could be viewed as a reality check for the visitors, but as a relentlessly physical Dinas side battered their way to a deserved five tries to one result, the benefits for this young Penarth squad were clear enough.

They are more than ready for their opening WRU Bowl fixture against Old Penarthians at Cwrt-y-Vil, now re-arranged for Thursday evening.

There were massive collisions from the start, as the Villagers tried to out-muscle and out-pace the Seasiders, but the youngsters held firm, only to fall behind after 10 minutes as the hosts’ scrum-half skipped off the back of the first scrum of the game for a 7-0 lead.

Penarth Times:

Aled Rees clears. Picture: Keri Lovell

Despite conceding an obvious weight advantage in the scrums, the Penarth eight were no pushover and held their ground throughout.

The fact that the scoreboard was slowly ticking over in the first half was solely due to the fact that Dinas were better at taking their chances when they came.

Penarth Times:

Alex Shore gives chase. Picture: Keri Lovell

After half an hour, they claimed a line-out on the 22 and their blindside flanker romped home after the initial drive from the maul. 12-0.

As half-time approached, in a rare excursion into open play, the Villagers’ full-back made a clean break from their own 22 and delivered a scoring pass when finally tackled to the supporting right-wing. 19-0.

The Seasiders had been competitive throughout, but failed to register a score despite winning their fair share of possession and field position.

This all changed in the first minute of the second half as Kevin Maddox juggled a tapped penalty on the Dinas 22 and, two short passes later, Alan Doyle was over the line for yet another try in open play. 19-7

Penarth were now having a much better time of it and applying pressure in all areas of the game, only to fall further behind on 55 minutes.

Pressing hard in the home 22, all it took was one stray pass and the Dinas scrum half was running the length of the pitch for what looked like a certain try.

However, Alex Shore had other ideas, chasing him down all the way to his own 22 and nailing the tackle.

The remaining problem was that the Villagers had arrived in numbers and, with the Seasiders’ defence out of position, the hosts’ left wing went over unopposed. 26-7

The match drew to a close in the gathering gloom as Dinas turned the screw and turnovers went this way and that, but ended with a fifth Dinas try on the final whistle. 31-7.

PENARTH SQUAD: Rob Rees, Andy Lang, Alan Doyle, Ben Heywood, Owen Lloyd, Harry Wood, Lloyd Ellis, Tom Griffiths, Geraint Williams, Cam Sultana, Alex Thau, Hugh Leach, Alex Shore. Jim Crothers, Kevin Maddox, Rhys Morgan ©, Morgan Smith, Aled Rees, Ellis Shewring, Rhys Beynon, George Kynaston, Josh Hurley, Joe Williams.

WRU Bowl Round-Robin

Thursday 5th August 2021

Old Penarthians v PENARTH

Cwrt-y-Vil Playing Fields, St.Mark’s Road, Penarth CF64 3PF

Kick-off 7pm