Dinas surpass Penarth in the long-awaited derby clash.
A carnival atmosphere and a large crowd greeted the two sides as they took to the pitch at a sun-drenched Common for a highly anticipated local derby which saw Dinas Powys emerge 22 – 8 victors over local rivals Penarth.
The ‘Villagers’ of Dinas Powys dominated the first hour of the encounter and scored all their points during this period. However a brave and committed Penarth side fought their way back into the contest in the final quarter in what was to be their best period of play.
Dinas took the lead after ten minutes when powerful centre Ciaran Driscoll hurtled through the Penarth defensive line to cross in the shadow of the posts and open the scoring. Fly-half Ben White’s successful conversion saw the first seven points awarded to the home side.
A second scintillating try seemed to be on the cards just moments later as centre Adam Williams crossed the gain line at pace just outside the Penarth twenty-two. To the dismay of the crowd, the distribution to Williams was adjudged to be forward and play was brought back for the resultant scrum. However, the much-vaunted Penarth scrum was not enjoying the dominance the travelling supporters expected. Dinas’ props Andrew O’Malia and Caleb Robinson together with hooker Ryan Shallish exerted pressure at the set piece and drew a penalty that White converted to extend the lead by a further three points.
The home side was dominating possession and was consequently able to allow their exciting backline to thrill the home support. Wingers Rhys Evans and Sonny Driscoll saw a lot of the ball as play switched from one side to the other. Penarth’s robust defence was breached again after twenty-five minutes when scrum-half Nathan Williams found himself on the left-wing following such passage of play. The impeccable White converted and the home side led 17-0.
A penalty in the dying moments was successfully kicked from distance by Penarth’s Nathan Smith which gave the visitors a conciliatory three points and brought the half time score to an encouraging 17-3.
The second half started as the first had ended with the home side dominating the game. Forwards Gareth Williams, Huw Thomas, Lewys John and captain Josh Dunleavy, in a display of immense physicality, exerted pressure at the break down freeing the ball for home flanker Lewis Dunleavy who showed great pace to run thirty metres and outstrip the Penarth defence. This try, which was to provide the last points for the ‘Villagers’, crowned a man of the match performance by the unassuming Dunleavy who dominated the lineout and once again displayed his amazing prowess for tackling.
During the latter part of the game, the visitor’s pack rumbled over in the corner nearest the clubhouse for a try after being encamped in Dinas’ half of the pitch for quite some time. The home defence during this period had been immense as tackle after tackle was made; replacements Luke Dyer and Corey Imperatto were to the fore in this facet of the match.
This was a victory that elevated Dinas Powys to second in the division and will be a source of encouragement as they look towards next week’s away fixture at Gwernyfed, a club based in Talgarth near Brecon.
The Dinas Powys clubhouse was a very happy place on Saturday evening full elated supporters that could celebrate a perfect day following the victories for the ‘Villagers’ and the national side.
Two derbies – two wins.