|31st August 2019||12:00 PM||2019-20||Mostly sunny|
Dinas fly out of the blocks
Dinas travelled up the Gwent valley to Cwmbran for their last pre-season friendly. Despite a heavy downpour earlier that morning, the afternoon was bright and favoured open running rugby. The Villagers started the match full of confidence. Some sublime handling and extensive interplay between forwards and backs saw the visitors move the ball back and forth the pitch at a blistering pace. Their enterprise was rewarded with two fine trys; Callum Bricknell crossing for the first and Matthew Williams for the second. Both trys were successfully converted and with just fifteen-minutes played, the Villagers were fourteen points to the good. However, the Crows, as Cwmbran are affectionately known, are no slouches and the men in black and white soon put pay to Dinas’ purple patch scoring two trys of their own before the end of the first half. The second was a clever chip and chase that forced defending winger James Wiltshire to turn and race back towards his own tryline. Wiltshire is blessed with pace yet even he was unable to catch the opposition who was already in full stride before Wiltshire had turned. Just the slight inaccuracy in the kicks of Cwmbran separated the teams at half-time with the score 10-14.
Resilience and perseverance pays off
Dinas’ start to the second half, in comparison to the first, was a mixed affair. This was a pre-season friendly and coach Darren Ryan experimented with different player combinations; the chopping and changing seemed to disrupt the flow of the game for the visitors. Although the team continued to play with ambition and flair, it is fair to say that the execution wasn’t quite as sharp as it was in the first-half. During this phase of the game, Cwmbran sensibly used the downhill slope of the pitch to their advantage and managed to cross the Villagers whitewash on two further occasions. Their kicker had found his form and both conversions sailed cleanly between the sticks to give the home team and impressive (and deserved) fourteen-point lead with just eight minutes to go. Those who have followed Dinas over the past several seasons will know that we are not a team that will take defeat without a fight to the end. And once again, this resilience shone through. Three successive tries by Joe Page, Adam Williams and James Wiltshire turned the game on its head, cutting the home supporters celebrations short and evoking cheers from the travelling contingent. Despite missing the three conversions, the Villagers had successfully notched up their first win of the season against a quality Cwmbran team. NB: We would like to extend our sincere thanks to Cwmbran for stepping in at the last minute following the withdrawal of Newport High School Old Boys from our pre-arranged fixture and for extending their hospitality during the Welsh international match that followed.