Despite a spirited performance from opponents Bryn Tawe, the team from Port Talbot were crowned champions of this year's competition
It was a fast paced and thrilling end to the Ospreys SchoolsUnder 16's Cup competition this week as Dyffryn Comprehensive saw off a late comeback from opponents Ysgol Gyfun Gymraeg Bryn Tawe to win the cup. Despite going down by 41 points to 7 at one point the Swansea school carried on fighting until the last minute against deserved winners Dyffryn.
It was a fairly equal start to the match as both teams found their feet in the match. Good runs by Rhys Henry and Owen Morris for Dyffryn saw them looking dangerous but Bryn Tawe held their own with some strong defending and turn overs. Only Bryn Tawe's lack of support for individual runners stopping them causing any real trouble for the Dyffryn defence.
Prop's that seemed to think they were back's were Dyffryn's secret weapon throughout the game and both Cameron Clayton and Jordan Walters started many of the Port Talbot team's successful breaks for the try line. After 14 minutes of the game a break by Clayton set up Owen Morris to dodge through several defending players to score the first try of the game. Tyler Aylward unsuccessful with his conversion attempt.
Just two minutes later Dyffryn were crossing the try line again. Bryn Tawe dropping their jumper in their own line out, allowing Cameron Jones to collect the ball and set up Rhys Henry to score. This time Aylward was successful in adding the two extra points.
It wasn't all Dyffryn however, a few minutes later Bryn Tawe that took their opportunities and Callum Hanney raced over to score for the Swansea side. A successful conversion from Corey Evans bringing them back within five points.
A strong pack allowed Dyffryn to steal a Bryn Tawe scrum soon after and their powerful forwards powered the team up field. Jordan Walters eventually managing to stretch over the try line to score however the conversion attempt was unsuccessful as it hit the posts.
Prop Jordan Walters quickly made another break from the restart and just two minutes after the last try, Dyffryn were charging over the try line again. The extra two points went missing however with the ball hitting the posts again.
The team from Port Talbot brought the first half to a close 90 seconds later with yet another try. Again it was prop Jordan Walters that made the initial break before fast paced Owen Morris completed the move to score his second of the match. Tyler Aylward's successful conversion meaning the score at half time was:
Ysgol Gyfun Gymraeg Bryn Tawe 7 - 29 Dyffryn School
The tries just kept coming for Dyffryn in the second half. They collected their own ball from kick off and charged towards the try line. With just one minute on the clock prop Cameron Clayton scored the first points of the second half. Tyler Aylward's conversion attempt just going wide of the posts.
It wasn't just Dyffryn's attacking play that was impressive, their defensive play was equally impressive as at the start of the second half. They put huge pressure on Bryn Tawe whenever they were in control of the ball and forced them into handling errors.
With 7 minutes gone in the second half the side from Port Talbot scored their penultimate try courtesy of an outstanding run from Owen Morris. The winger raced from deep inside his own 22 all the way to the try line, dodging tackles as he went. Aylward providing a successful conversion.
Full credit must go to Bryn Tawe as despite trailing by 34 points, not once did they put their heads down but instead staged an impressive comeback against the incredibly strong Dyffryn side. With almost three quarters of the match gone, they stepped up their defence and made some strong tackles, number 8 Jacob Kennedy particularly causing Dyffryn problems.
When Dyffryn's Jac Rodgers was sent to the sin bin, Bryn Tawe took their opportunities. Levy Burgess making yards with a great run and after a scrum for a Dyffryn knock on, Jacob Kennedy charged through the defence to score for Bryn Tawe. Corey Evans successfully converting the try.
Despite the improved performance from Bryn Tawe there was no doubting who was the stronger side on the day as Dyffryn were quickly back on the attack to score their 8th and final try of the game. With 20 minutes played in the second half, the team from Port Talbot overpowered a Bryn Tawe scrum and Rhys Henry dived for the try line. Aylward unable to convert with his final kick at the posts.
Just after the restart it looked like Dyfrryn were about to score try number 9, thanks to another charge by Jordan Walters from half way to within feet of the try line. However Bryn Tawe were able to steal the ball. Cai Thomas making it most of the length of the pitch before Dyffryn could bring him down. Liam Burne then making it from the 22 to slip across the try line. This time Corey Evans was unable to find the target with the conversion.
Handling errors marred the last few attempts from Dyffryn and instead Bryn Tawe closed out the game in the stronger manner. Some clever play setting up runs from Jack Sullivan and Jacob Kennedy. Despite losing the game, Bryn Tawe had the last word as Jack Sullivan ran around the Dyffryn defence to score in the final minute of the game. With no conversion the match finished:
Ysgol Gyfun Gymraeg Bryn Tawe 24 - 46 Dyffryn School