NA­TIONAL PLATE

Glamorgan Gazette - - Rugbyunion -

MAESTEG CELTIC ...... 18 AM­MAN­FORD ............. 15

CELTIC played Division 1 Am­man­ford in the first round of the WRU Plate com­pe­ti­tion.

The vis­i­tors be­gan with high in­ten­sity and dom­i­nated the first quar­ter of an hour. Great de­fence by flankers Peter Ke­hoe and Rhys Be­van Jones to­gether with three quar­ters Rhys Fisher, Kris­tian Jenk­ins, Nathan Healey and Neil Arthur kept them point­less. Slowly Celtic front five of Sean Lam­bert, Ash­ley Poole, Mathew Phillips, Robert Golden and Alex Jones be­gan to dom­i­nate their op­po­nents.

At the half-hour mark the pres­sure forced Am­man­ford to give bad ball to their full back. Cen­tres Kris­tian Jenk­ins and Nathan Healey were up fast and forced a scrum. The Celtic pack drove their op­po­nents over their line for cap­tain Oliver Petty to touch down. Mathew Har­ris con­verted. Am- man­ford at­tacked strongly from the kick off and cre­ated an op­por­tu­nity for their winger to run in a try in the cor­ner.

Celtic pack were mag­nif­i­cent in the sec­ond half and con­trolled poses­sion. They drove a scrum deep into their op­po­nents’ 22 be­fore be­ing pe­nalised. Am­man­ford kicked to the half way and won the li­ne­out. Celtic out­side half Mathew Har­ris an­tic­i­pated their move and in­ter­cepted the pass. He sprinted around the cover de­fence to score in the cor­ner. Am­man­ford came level when their cen­tre stepped in­side the Celtic de­fence to touch down near the posts.

Celtic pack pounded the Am­man­ford de­fence with Oliver Petty, Alex Jones, Rhys Be­van Jones and Ryan Jones car­ry­ing the ball fe­ro­ciously but the Am­man­ford de­fence held strong.

Even­tu­ally prop Sean Lam­bert forced his op­po­site num­ber to con­cede a penalty un­der the posts and Mathew Har­ris put Celtic ahead. Celtic con­tin­ued to pres­sure the Am­man­ford de­fence and a kick into the 22 by Har­ris was fol­lowed up quickly and the for­wards won a penalty from the ruck which Har­ris kicked. Am­man­ford came back strongly from the kick off and forced Celtic to con­cede a penalty to close the score.

The re­main­ing min­utes were in­tensely con­tested but Celtic pack dom­i­nated ter­ri­tory to win the game.

KEITH SQUIRE

Celtic cap­tain and Man of the Match Oliver Petty scores

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