Another good win down at Tata Steel last Saturday. A 36-14 win, but without the winning bonus point, was a good result given the shocking refereeing display that meant that Ebbw saw three yellow cards. One was well deserved (spear tackle, albeit instinctive), one was for retaliation and the third for not committing a foul at all.
So, despite 14 points from a possible 15, Ebbw drop to third in the table. Pontypool home is next up. This report from the EVRFC website:
Ebbw emerged as comfortable victors in this tough clash between reigning champions of Division Ones West and East. Playing on a table top surface, Ebbw always looked in control and put Tata under a huge amount of pressure, reflected in a penalty count of 16 to 10. Yet referee Mr. Morgan of Swansea saw fit to brandish three yellow cards to Ebbw and just one to Tata. Dan Haymond's immaculate kicking, the power of Spencer Gibson and Polu Uhi, and the excellence of flankers Cameron Reagan and Ronny Kynes represented the difference between the sides, while Ashley Sweet was prominent in tight and loose play.
Gibson got the Steelmen's first try when he took a pass from Kynes 25 metres out on the right flank and crashed through five tacklers to touch down. Haymond's conversion added to his three previous penalties to make it 16-6, a lead Ebbw took into the break, despite being down to 13 with Haymond and Robert Sevenoaks in the sin bin. Tata had offered little, but winger Gbemi Fisher had featured prominently in their attacking play, and the pack, well led by former Maesteg favourite Gareth Edwards, had succeeded in slowing Ebbw's tempo by playing on, and sometimes over, the offside line.
A third Gareth Walters penalty early in the second half made it 16-9, but that was the closest his side got. Two more Haymond penalties stretched it to 22-9 before lock Ben Davies squeezed in at the corner when Ebbw were back down to 14, Kynes having been mystifyingly carded when seemingly competing fairly for the ball on the floor. Almost immediately, the Steelmen struck back with Polu Uhi showing fantastic strength and power to shrug off half a dozen tacklers in running in from 20 metres. Haymond's extras took the score to 29-14 and the scoring was completed when Ronny Kynes broke from a great line out drive to capture a third try which Josh Lewis goaled.
Ultimately there was no bonus point for Ebbw, but they would have been satisfied by another big win, especially over the champions of the West who will certainly be in the mix at the end of the season.
Charlie Simpson, Tom Ashmead, Josh Lewis, Polu Uhi, Daniel Ajuwa; Dan Haymond, Josh Davies; Ross Jones, Mathew Williams (c), Robert Sevenoaks; Joe Bartlett, Ashley Sweet; Cameron Reagan, Ronny Kynes, Spencer Gibson. Bench: Josh Powell, Jonnny Bowen, Rhys Clarke, Will Owen, Jamie Jones.