Wednesday, 2 April 2014

Merthyr remain on course for League and Cup double

Merthyr tightened their grip at the summit of One East with a try bonus 45-5 win over Gilfach Goch at the Wern that saw them move three points clear at the top.
No 8. Craig Everett on the charge for the Ironmen
The Ironmen convincingly overcame their visitors with a powerful performance, helping themselves to seven tries in all. Fullback Josh Flye claimed a brace while Cameron Gardner, Matthew Trowbridge, Aaron Harris, Martyn Luckwell and Sam Edwards also crossed the whitewash.
Merthyr, who were nearly relegated last season, now look firm favourites to claim the title and remain on course for a league and cup double, playing Glynneath in a couple of weeks’ time for a place in the Swalec Plate final.
“The boys are playing some good football at the moment and with big games on the horizon it is important that we keep the momentum and winning mentality going,” commented Team Manager Paul Lewis.
Merthyr's Craig Lynch in line-out action against Gilfach Goch 
With a game in hand over second place Heol y Cyw and seven points clear of Ystrad Rhondda, Lewis acknowledges things are looking good for his side but they aren’t taking anything for granted.
“Admittedly, it is looking good for us but we’d be foolish to get ahead of ourselves. We just have to focus on one match at a time and keep our levels up.”
Next up for Lee Jarvis’ side is a trip to Glamorgan Wanderers in the league this Saturday before taking on One West leaders Glynneath at Mountain Ash in a mouth-watering Swalec Plate semi-final showdown.
“We’ll be going to the Wanderers looking to take home maximum points and really keep the pressure on the teams below us in the table. We said at the start of the season the title and promotion was our main goal but there is no doubt that the match against Glynneath will be huge for us.”
With a chance to play at the Millennium Stadium for the winners, Lewis admits competition for places in the team is fierce.
“We’ve had a couple of injuries but the boys that have come in have really put their hands up, and the coaching staff have some big decisions to make for the big matches coming up in the last few weeks of the season.”
Meanwhile, Heol y Cyw are the Ironmen’s closest challengers as they battled to a 12-6 win over Ystrad Rhondda, a result that sees the Cockerels leapfrog Ystrad in the table.
Tries from Luke O’Driscoll and Paul Songhurst along with a Mike Huckridge conversion was enough for the Cockerels to claim their 13th win of the season.
In a high scoring encounter Ynysybwl put Glamorgan Wanderers to the sword, running out 71-24 home winners.
The Bwl ran riot, crossing ten times -Jonathan Gough grabbed a hat-trick while Sean Ireland (2), Dale Stuckey, Alun Thomas, Dan Voyle, Gary King and Lewis Ryan also crossed the whitewash.
The Wanderers didn’t leave empty-handed though as they took away a try bonus point for their efforts.
Elsewhere, Rumney overcame Penallta in a keenly contested clash by the slenderest of margins with a 27-26 success.
Danny Clark fired over five penalties while Tom Silva and Paul King crossed for the visitors.
The Pitmen outscored their visitors three tries to two thanks to a penalty try and touchdowns from Johnny Wright and Elliot Keep, but it wasn’t enough to avoid their eighth defeat.
In the day’s other fixtures, Bedlinog clinched just their fourth win of the season with a 27-10 success at Treorchy, while Nelson ran out 28-21 winners against Rhydyfelin.


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