Bombettes hold the champions
12:02pm Wednesday 11th September 2013 in Sport
BARRY LADIES 10pts
LAST year's champions Penalta were the visitors in an eagerly awaited fixture and, due to recent transfers to the Green & Whites, the game had an extra edge.
Playing up the slope in the first half, Barry Bombettes soon showed the away side what a hard game they were in for and flanker ‘Goldilocks’ Williams continued her good start to the season with a number of trademark crunching tackles. Unfortunately, centre G Williams was injured in the first five minutes and was replaced by B Fox. Returning skipper Jones led from the front with a typical charge before the ball was turned over.
Penalta countered quickly and, not for the first time, Barry were thankful to a try-saving tackle from full-back Anna Nation. The home side defended admirably as Penalta tried to utilise the conditions to their advantage, and Nation again prevented a certain score, forcing another knock on. The home side must, however, guard against wayward kicks from their own 22 as one such kick nearly resulted in the first score. Only a brilliant tackle by second row Young averted the danger. Barry were being tested to the hilt, but defended stoutly and there were further try-saving tackles from Fox and winger Rees.
After this initial pressure, Barry gained in confidence and, with a powerful scrum, turned over Penalta ball. No 9 Shananan was controlling the ball superbly and giving her opposite number a torrid time. When Penalta infringed, S Williams and Cahill tore into the away defence from well-timed passes from the scrum half. Unfortunately, Ka Jones picked up an injury and was replaced by Horne.
Making her debut, C Coleman won some clean line out ball for the home side who took the game to the visitors, with Yapp and her forwards making inroads.
Battering the visiting line, the home forwards set up quick ball for Shananan whose slick pass allowed right wing 'Stretch' Rees to power over.
With the clock running down to half-time, Penalta hit back with an unconverted try and, with their tails up, it took another excellent tackle from Nation to save the day.
Bombettes immediately started to use the conditions to their advantage in the second half, with the scrum working well and forcing Penalta backwards at a rate of knots. Substitutions were made, with Potter and C Rees coming on and Hill replacing Phillips at No 2 for her debut.
The home forwards then displayed some sublime handling skills in offloading in the tackle, with Cahill, S Williams, Horne and Potter driving Penalta back. However, just when the home support expected another try, the odd wrong decision and knock on cost the side possession and territory. Indeed, from turnover ball, Penalta sprinted into the home 22 and, following another loose home kick, the visitors regathered the ball and forced their way over for an unconverted try.
With the clock counting ominously down and with a few choice words in their ears, Barry tore back into the Penalta half and, camping in the away 22, were then deemed held up over the line. However, from another dominant scrum, K Jones wasn’t to be denied and muscled her way over for the equalising try. Despite her best efforts, the conversion just failed.
Penalta were far happier with the draw than the home side and, although they will be disappointed not to have won, Barry must be congratulated on holding the champions.
This was another step forward for the Green & Whites and bodes well for the rest of the season. When these ladies start gelling properly and injured players return, the formidable outfit will be a match for any opponents.
Barry’s woman of the match was Anna Nation and Penalta chose Kim Jones.
Team: Ka Jones, Phillips, Cahill, D Young, C Coleman, Husk, S Williams, Yapp, Shananan, Bannister, J Rees, G Williams, K Jones (C), H Brown, Nation, Subs: Cushen, Hill, C Rees, Fox, Horne, Potter and B Jones.
The Bombettes travel to Tylorstown on September 15. Any supporters wishing to travel should contact Rachel Baron or the club.