11 September 2017 / Club News


Saturday, September, 9th, 2017.

Maesteg Quins 41 – 3 Maesteg

Division One South-West

Having won on the road in the season opener, Quins wanted to maintain momentum. Meanwhile, Maesteg wanted to open their account having lost at Llynfi Road a week previously, especially against the Quins.

Different Styles

Polar opposites in their styles of play Maesteg were forced into an expansive game and ran the ball from literally everywhere. Whereas the Quins were content to play it tighter. Using the pack to its optimum discomforting effect, Quins shunted and mauled their way to victory. The scrum was very effective, but adding to their boiler house display the second row duo of Nathan Smith and Scott Williams put in sublime line-out performances, in addition to their telling ball-carrying contributions.

Half-back Control

Given this solid platform, the Quins half-backs controlled the match magnificently with their precision booting, ball in hand and also the scoring. With such formidable beasts at their disposal, the Quins were the dominant predators.

Home Flair

Not that the Quins didn’t have any flair on show. On his home debut Rhodri Davies made some lovely early breaks. Later, Kieran Watkins used his flamenco feet to devastatingly deviate his running angles and manufacture an incredible individual fifty yards break that eluded numerous defenders.

Lead Taken

A steepling Geraint Watkins box-kick found wing Ethan Davies, who was caught and downed by Alex Griffiths. With the Quins pack having a clear, straight run at the breakdown, they were able to counter-ruck in a single sweeping motion and stole possession. Sensing the Old Parish were wounded and vulnerable, Watkins went for the kill. He box-kicked once more and although gathered, the greasy ball popped out of Callum Powell’s grasp when tackled. Like a vulture, Lee Ronan picked off the prize meat of the ball from the carcass of the tackle area and dived over to the right of the Pwll-yr-Iwrch posts. Rhodri Davies converted.

'Any thing you can do, we can do better'... Maesteg Rally

With Tadgh McGuckin to the fore, Maesteg held onto possession and created breaks. Impatience allowed an offside to be punished by a forty yards McGuckin penalty.

'No you can't' - Quins take a hold on the game

With the Quins making multiple turnovers in an absurdly one-sided breakdown display, Rhodri Davies showed his game management credentials with a series of finely drilled ground gainers that sailed, dipped and bounced into touch to perfection.

An attacking scrum won from another turnover, saw Adam Hillier-Rees score after the front five had done their shunting. Davies converted.

An isolated carrier found Quins’ Scott Williams hovering over him tearing at the ball and conceded a penalty for not releasing. Davies goaled to extend the Quins lead

'Yes we can...' - Cut and Thrust

It was all action now, with the game being played with a thrust, parry and counter-thrust. Maesteg gave as good as they got.

Nathan Smith was denied at the corner. From the line-out came a scrum. When the Quins were penalised, Maesteg set off on a seven-a-side movement and were themselves denied at the opposite corner flag.

Second Period

The second half started in the same vein. When the Quins lost an immediate opportunity to score, Maesteg launched another long-range attack.

Dominant… but room for improvement

Despite claiming a pushover try, the Quins need to work on their scrum. There was a lack of cohesion. No combined tightening squeeze, no co-ordinated drop of bodies or synchronized snap shove. Instead the Quins scrum resembled a bed at a mass orgy; lots of individualistic movements with the same aim, but at wholly different times.

'No you can't, no you can't, no you can't'... Scoring Restarts

A superbly weighted touch-finder bounced ever closer to the Maesteg goal line. Presumption proved the mother of all screw ups, as Simon Evans waited for the ball to trickle over the line to dab it down for a scrum. The ball proved dastardly as it stopped short of crossing the line by a mere inch. Nevertheless, inspired by his team’s attacking exploits, Evans picked up and attempted a chip over the heads of the oncoming chasers. Quins re-gathered when Steven Williams dived on the ball. Lee Ronan broke through from the ruck and when the ball was quickly recycled, Geraint Watkins raced onto the pop pass and was over.

Maesteg were finding supporting runners well with some excellent support running, allowing them to put together some fine long distance movements. However, once halted, the Quins swarmed around the breakdown and stole possession with near impunity.

Another clever kick saw Alex Griffiths and Aled Edwards chase down Harrison Evans. Like lions on the hunt they pounced on the defender's upper body, overpowered him and dragged the winger into touch. The driving maul from the line-out was swiftly into fifth gear and Nathan Smith burst through to score the bonus point try (Picture courtesy of Gareth William Rees Photography).

Hoisted by Own Petard

Quins had the opportunity to repeat the feat, but chose to kick at goal. The decision was all the more baffling when soon after, Maesteg were foiled by their own tactics. Cleverly negotiating the Old Parish decision not to engage at the line-out, the command not to pass the ball back was instantaneous and the hosts free-wheeled forwards. Scott Williams scored a try from fully thirty yards, without an opposition fingertip being placed on him, amid much heated debate. Davies converted.

Poor Impressionists

Not that this was the only aspect of Quins play that was hotly contested. For some, every line-out wasn’t straight, every defensive line off-side, every one of the innumerable turnovers a transgression. On this day Toulouse Latrec, the artist who famously suffered from hypertrophied genitals, died. It appears a section of the crowd was afflicted with this conditon too.

Sealed With a Try

In the final play a Maesteg scrum was disrupted. Geraint Watkins snatched the emerging ball from under Old Parish noses, sprinted, stretched and scored under the posts. Davies ended the match with a conversion to seal the biggest Quins margin of victory over the 7777.

Next week it's an early top of the table clash when Kenfig Hill visit South Parade.

15. Kieran Watkins 14. Alex Griffiths 13. Aled Edwards 12. Lee Ronan (T)

11. Geraint Evans 10. Rhodri Davies (4C PG) 9. Geraint Watkins (2T)

  1. Lewis Francis 2. Gavin Burridge 3. Dean Ronan 4. Nathan Smith (T)

5. Scott Williams (T) 6. Josh Mines 8. Adam Hillier-Rees (T)

7. Steven Williams (c)


16. Jack Picton for G. Evans 17. Ioan Williams for L. Francis

18. Steven Davies for J. Mines 19. Rhodri Bwye for A. Hillier-Rees

20. Mark Watson for G. Burridge

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