BARRY RFC 3rd XV 0pts
OLD ILLTYDIANS 2nd XV 17
TESTAMENT to the Barry Rugby Club's numbers and the commitment of the players is that, on a day when they fielded three senior teams, the Thirds still managed to name three substitutes.
With the 'olde man' taking up interim management duties, the Barrians faced tough opposition in the Cardiff side's second string.
Losing the toss, Barry played with the slope and the advantage of the strong wind in the first half and stayed in opposition territory for the majority of the 40 minutes. Within the first 10 minutes, No 9 C Noble was forced off with a shoulder injury, resulting in No 10 C Bailey providing scrum half cover and A Betts coming off the bench to slot in at centre. M Avient shuffled up to outside half and produced a man-of-the-match performance.
With the Barry scrum and line out working well, it seemed as if it was only a matter of time before the home side would notch up the first score, but they were guilty of the odd wrong choice and need to be more clinical and take penalties when they are on a plate.
That apart, Barrians had the better of the first half and, when the visitors threatened, full-back Tom Adams knocked them back and centre Dave Evans also had a good game. Fingernail tackle of game was by veteran Huw Davies who prevented a certain score for the visitors.
Further injuries for Barry to No 8 J Flynn and lock N Fulton resulted in the welcome return of J Davies and John Oxenham to the pack.
With the score level 0-0 at half time, the Barrians knew they had to front up in the second half and the whole team dug deep and defended manfully as Illtydians applied the pressure. Vitally, the visitors were able to bring on fresh legs and experience and this, ultimately, swung the game their way as they crossed for three tries, one of which was converted. Heroic home defence prevented the visitors snatching a bonus point fourth try.
The improving Barrians can be proud of of their commitment and workrate, with every player, some in unfamiliar positions, playing out of their skin.
Management wish a speedy recovery to those players who picked up knocks/injuries.