RUGBY: Abergavenny 7 Blaenavon 12

First published in Sport

THIS was a must-win game for Blaenavon to stay top of the league and it took just two minutes for them to show their intent, when second row Billings broke down field, only to be held up five metres from the Abergavenny line.

Blaenavon continued to apply pressure and it was no surprise after 11 minutes that Nathan Preece brushed the opposition centres aside to sprint 30 metres to score an excellent try.

The visitors now had their tails up, but strong defence by the home side kept them at bay until the 26th minute, when a move started by Scott Creece was carried on by Horseman, Noble, Preece and full back Pearce to put Dennington over in the corner.

Pearce converted from the touchline. On 35 minutes, Blaenavon flanker Baldwin was sin-binned which allowed Abergavenny more of the game but the half finished 12-0 to the visitors.

The second half started more evenly, but with the visitors back row of Redman, Baldwin and Jones turning over ball, it was only an adjudged forward pass that prevented a further try.

After 55 minutes Blaenavon second row Noble injured a knee and was replaced by captain Lee Wright who slotted in at lock.

The game became a lot more open and both sides had openings, but Blaenavon wasted a number of overlaps. They made changes to the front row after Lewis John injured his back with Walters and Lauder stepping in.

On 73 minutes Blaenavon back row Jones was sin-binned which with all the other changes put the visitors under pressure and it was from a five metre scrum that Abergavenny was awarded a penalty try on 78 minutes.

All things considered this was a good display by Blaenavon who can be proud of their defence under pressure.

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