Club v Bream (Home) 20 Aug 2011

7-22 Loss

A 7-22 loss to Bream RFC in last Saturday’s trial match on Chippenham gave Monmouth players (and Managers) much food for thought.

For much of the game Monmouth gave as good as they got and there were some encouragingly combative performances by individuals such as fly-half Ricketts and hooker McCord, but it was Bream who lasted longest and took advantage of sudden weaknesses in defence by Monmouth which led to increased confidence and strong runs by the visitors.

True it is early days and many regulars were absent but it is many a year since Monmouth has been comprehensively beaten at the trials stage.

Bream started the best, putting the Monmouth line under considerable pressure and it was as well that at this early stage their tackling was robust.

A converted penalty by Bream broke the stalemate and this lifted the visiting pack enough for them to show for the first time an impressive driving maul which brought them another 7 points in the first quarter of an hour. Things may have been more equal in this session but for the home team’s propensity to kick away possession, particularly when Bream had line-out superiority.

The next session again started with Bream seeming to be in the ascendancy with strong bursts down-field but the Monmouth defence was resolute. Having rebuffed the attacks, Monmouth rallied and played some of its best rugby, putting several moves together leading to one particularly well worked onslaught which No 8 Joel Price capped with a try converted by Rhys Ricketts from far out to bring the scores to 7-10.

The next session was much more Monmouth’s with particularly robust play by returning scrum-half Mike Hall, hooker McCord and utility player Stacey Edwards. The referee played his part too with extended playing of ‘advantage’ and an insistence on releasing the tackler and the ball in the tackle area.

The session remained score-less, however, as a 35 yard drive resulted in the ball being held up over the Bream line and much against the pattern of play.

Much depended on the final session which Monmouth opened with a drive to the visitors’ line when they so nearly scored but a penalty kick to Bream led to play transferring to the other end of the field where a substantial overlap and missed tackle brought a converted try and saw the tide finally turn.

Bream’s confidence now abounded with several of their mid-field players exploiting increasingly lax tackling. Tempers became brittle with a Monmouth player banished from the field and Bream drove the nail in scoring another try for the 7-22 win.

Next week another home game, this time against Llandaff North, gives Monmouth another chance to smarten their game with better attended training this week and the return of a few key players.

The Youth XV would appear to have no such difficulties having lost with relatively small numbers to normally superior Caerleon by only 5-3 in their away game, which bodes well for the season and in the longer term for the seniors, too.

Try: J.Price
Conv: R.Ricketts Telephone: +44 (0)1600 712309 Email: copyright Monmouth RFC 2018