Category: Neath Rugby News

TEAM NEWS: NEATH v LLANELLI (AWAY) – FRIDAY, NOVEMBER 24th, 2017

Neath travel to play Llanelli at Parc-y-Scarlets on Friday (kick off 7.15pm) seeking to build on last week’s overdue success against Llandovery.

For the first time in months, Neath did not add any fresh injury problems to their roster and consequently there is only one change in the starting line-up where Scott Gibson takes over from Chris Morgans at scrum-half while David Griggs and James Roberts return on the replacements’ bench.

Neath coach Gareth Llewellyn said, “We were pleased to get the win against Llandovery last week when we showed the tougher edge we have been seeking.

“Our attacking play has been good – we have runners who threaten from anywhere and are averaging three tries per game exactly the same as RGC and Carmarthen Quins who occupy the top two places.

“We are asking largely the same group of players to show they can do it again because consistent achievement is what it is about.

“Llanelli had a good win themselves against Bridgend and we know it will take an even bigger effort this week as wins at Parc-y-Scarlets are earned the hard way.”

Neath v Llanelli (Away)
15 Ed Howley; 14 Mike Evans, 13 Richard Smith, 12 Gavin Evans (captain), 11 Geraint Llewellyn; 10 Iwan Evans, 9 Chris Morgans; 1 Neil White, 2 Sion Crocker, 3 Geraint James; 4 Matthew Davies, 5 Jon Barley; 6 Rhys Jones, 8 Leon Ward, 7 Ryan Bean
Replacements :- 16 Liam Tobias, 17 Jordan Hawkins, 18 Ryan Thomas, 19 David Griggs, 20 Ceri White, 21 Chris Morgans, 22 Matthew Pearce, 23 James Roberts

WRU SURVEY – DEADLINE IMMINENT

Neath RFC supporters have until Friday to respond to the WRU Survey into the club game in Wales.
(link at end of article)

The WRU has appointed independent consultants to conduct a review of the Game in Wales and they have already hosted a few workshops and had meetings with key people.

As part of the review it is vital that the WRU has the views and thoughts of club members and supporters.

Therefore, NEATH SUPPORTERS are invited to open the link below and answer the questions on the survey or Premiership and Championship clubs:

https://www.surveymonkey.co.uk/r/WRUClubSurvey

LLANELLI MATCH INFORMATION

Llanelli RFC have informed us that entry to the ground on Friday (kick off 7.15pm) is via the QUINNELL LOUNGE only – not the ticket office :-

Visitors Admission to Llanelli RFC games 2017-2018 Season

Standard Adults Full price -£12
Seniors (60 and over on proof of age) -£8
Children 0-up to and including 6- Free
Children Over 6- and including 16- £2 a ticket
All tickets must be purchased on the day of the match at the entrance to the lounge NOT ticket office. Cash only.
No advance sales
Parking charge £3 per vehicle to park in the Stadium Bowl near to the stand entrance.
Match day Programmes available for purchase in the Quinnell Lounge at £2 each.

WALES UNDER-20’S TRAINING SQUAD

Congratulations to Neath lock Matthew Davies and scrum-half Reuben Morgan-Williams who have been included in a 52-man Wales Under-20’s squad.

Also in the running are centre Max Llewellyn who made his first-class debut for Neath last season in 9 appearances for the Blacks but is now with the Blues and hooker Dewi Lake, attached to Bridgend, who helped Neath out on permit at Swansea and Carmarthen recently.

Team manager Martyn Morris said, “We are delighted for all these young players. They are at the start of what we hope will be long careers in the game and the whole Club wishes them well.”

MATCH REPORT: NEATH 19 LLANDOVERY 5 – (17-11-2017)

NEATH 19 LLANDOVERY 5
Sharpness in attack and total commitment in defence ensured that Neath put an end to their depressing run with a well-merited victory under The Gnoll floodlights on Friday.

Both sides were under-strength – Neath due to their injury-list and Llandovery due to Scarlets’ calls – but the sides served up entertaining, action-packed rugby football which warmed the crowd on a cold, still November night.

Neath showed their determination from the start. Quickly out of the blocks – a rarity this season – after only four minutes, they took a lead they would never lose. Immediately onto the attack, No.8 Leon Ward took a quick tap and big lock Matthew Davies celebrated his inclusion in the preliminary Wales Under-20’s squad by bundling over for the opening try and the young forward went on to enjoy a fine game, frequently making the hard yards and inroads into the Llandovery ranks.

Neath were playing some good rugby with halves Chris Morgans and Iwan Evans probing and kicking well and the three-quarters looked strong and full of running. Up front, Neath had the edge at the scrums, the line-out work was sound and prop Geraint James, hooker Sion Crocker and flanker Ryan Bean showed up well in the loose.

The Blacks went further ahead after good sustained play saw them retain possession through the phases and the hard-working Leon Ward took an inside pass from scrum-half Morgans to cross and full back Ed Howley converted to make it 12-nil. It was fast and furious stuff and Neath were a little unfortunate not to add to their advantage, Mike Evans and Morgans going desperately close.

Leading 12-nil at half-time, Neath were determined not to let the opportunity escape them. Llandovery started the second-half on the attack but two good relieving kicks by Morgans kept them at bay and the Blacks soon levied their third try.

The forwards, hunting as eight, marched on impressively from a line-out on the 22 and Crocker put back-rower Rhys Jones through a gap to ploug over at the posts and Howley’s conversion made it 19-nil. Llandovery came back at Neath and forced a series of close-range positions but their efforts came to nothing as the home defence was resolute and replacement Dan Guarneri ran enterprisingly out of defence.

At the other end, Neath pressed but were thwarted by the Llandovery defence which bordered dangerously on the off-side line. Llandovery kept coming and, after Crocker had been yellow-carded, their efforts brought about a try for replacement Jamie Hughes.

Llandovery threw everything into attack at the end in a vain attempt to rescue a bonus-point and the Neath replacements worked as hard as anyone in defence as Neath kept them out and deservedly took the spoils.

Of course, the win came against a side every bit as disrupted as Neath but the Blacks will happily take it in the knowledge that Llanelli away next Friday will require an even bigger effort. For the 8th time this season, Neath hit 3 tries and, with 33 from 11 games, they are level with leaders RGC and second-placed Carmarthen Quins; this time the defence was tight and limited Llandovery to just one score … and that was the difference : a hungry Neath team on a mission. Now it must be sustained !

NEATH – E.Howley (D.Guarneri); M.Evans, R.Smith, G.Evans (capt) (M.Pearce) G.Llewellyn; I.Evans, C.Morgans (S.Gibson); N.White (L.Tobias),S.Crocker (J.Hawkins), G.James (R.Thomas); M.Davies (C.White), J.Barley; R.Jones, L.Ward, R.Bean

LLANDOVERY – L.Williams; O.Davies (D.Pritchard), R.Evans, K.Charles, R.Wall; K.Jones (N.Setaro), A.Davies (S.Maynard); B.Watkins (J.Hughes), M.Moore (R.Guest), G.Cunniffe (L.Green); B.Griffiths, M.Jones (L.Ellis-Jones); E.Price, R.Brooks (capt), D.Eager (S.Miles)
Referee – Mr. G.Morris (Cardiff)


MATCH PREVIEW
It has been 8 long weeks since Neath last played a home game but on Friday the Welsh All Blacks host Llandovery at The Gnoll (kick off 7.30pm).

Neath’s injury problems mounted last week when they lost wing Alec Jenkins (quad) and prop Ben Uphill (ribs) at RGC but they battled away in the second-half before losing 19-31.

The Blacks make four changes with Neil White and Geraint James returning at prop and Ryan Bean in the back row. Only behind the scrum change sees Geraint Llewellyn take over from Alec Jenkins.

Neath coach Gareth Llewellyn said, “It will be nice to play at home again after such a long break. We still have a lot of injuries and Llandovery, probably the best footballing side in the Premiership, will obviously be another big challenge for us.

“If our forwards impose themselves like they did in the second-half last week and we stop killing ourselves with silly errors, we can play and boost our 30 tries tally which is up there with Llandovery’s best which is 35.”

Dan Guarneri and Ceri White return to the replacements’ bench which also features hooker Jordan Hawkins.

Neath v Llandovery (Home)
15 Ed Howley; 14 Mike Evans, 13 Richard Smith, 12 Gavin Evans (captain), 11 Geraint Llewellyn; 10 Iwan Evans, 9 Chris Morgans; 1 Neil White, 2 Sion Crocker, 3 Geraint James; 4 Matthew Davies, 5 Jon Barley; 6 Rhys Jones, 8 Leon Ward, 7 Ryan Bean
Replacements :- 16 Liam Tobias, 17 Jordan Hawkins, 18 Ryan Thomas, 19 Scott Hicks, 20 Ceri White, 21 Scott Gibson, 22 Matthew Pearce, 23 Dan Guarneri

JAKE COLE SIGNS FOR BLACKS

Scrum-half Jake Cole has signed for Neath.

The Neath Athletic product has returned to his home town to take up a local employment opportunity and Neath were quick to add him to the squad.

Neath team manager Martyn Morris said, “We are thrilled that Jake has decided to come on board with us. I coached him at youth level and following a spell at Swansea he was taken on by the Ospreys.

“He is a real competitor and has obvious potential and, once we get him back to full match sharpness, he will be another asset in our strong pool of scrum-halves.”

Jake’s brother Josh is also attached to Neath but the unlucky Academy back-rower is out of action again after suffering a double break to his jaw early in last Saturday’s game at Swansea.

Martyn Morris continued, “We all feel for Josh who has had desperately bad luck but we look forward to seeing the brothers step out on The Gnoll together as both are proud Neath boys with a real feeling for the Club.”

NEATH RFC REMEMBERS

 

 

 

 

NEATH RFC REMEMBERS

Neath RFC remembers those who laid down their lives in defence of our freedom.

“Their names liveth for evermore.”

As the country pauses to remember and honour its war heroes, NEATH RFC recalls its fallen heroes from two World Wars :-

First World War

Cpl. TREVOR BENSON
Sapper BILL BEYNON
Captain C.L.A. BRANFILL
Capt. R.G.S. (Reg) BROWNING
Sgt. DAVID DAVIES
Serjeant JOE DAVIES D.C.M.
Private GODFREY DOREY
2nd Lt. J.E. (JACK) GRIFFITHS
Sergeant R. (DICK) HUGHES D.C.M.
Private WILLIAM JARRETT
2nd Engineer LEWIS JENKINS
2nd Lt. GWILYM JONES
Cpl. TOMMY JONES
Private T.O. JONES
Private CHARLES MORRIS
Lt. JAMES MORRIS
Sgt. Major TOMMY OWEN
2nd Lt. FRED PERRETT
Capt. Adj. TOM POWELL
Private ROSSER D. ROSSER

Second World War

Private CRAD DAVIES
Stoker D.M. (DAVID MORGAN) EVANS

Note
As can be seen from the above list, several additional Neath RFC members who were lost have been identified in researching a short pamphlet “Neath RFC During the First World War” which is available (£3 plus £1.50 postage) from me via the Club.

However, if anybody is aware of any other Neath players who gave their lives in the conflicts and whose memories the Club should honour annually, please contact me via the Club by e-mail: contact@neathrugby.wales

Mike Price
Rugby Secretary