1st XV Match Report V Aberavon (Away) Sat 20/08/2011 

Aberavon 40 – 26 Moseley

This was a good and valuable workout for the 35 players and trialists in the new squad in this first competitive game of the pre season. Aberavon has a good side which finished fourth in the Welsh Premiership last season and reached the Welsh Cup final. The club has some good players and the robustness and rugby “nous” of a typical Welsh side especially when playing at home.


Moseley fielded almost two completely different and mixed ability teams for each half so it is difficult and misleading to draw any conclusions from the score line itself. This was further distorted as Aberavon also mixed and matched their squad throughout the game. In addition three influential players – Pennycook, Mason and Stott - while at the game, did not play through injury. Macburnie was also absent with a hand injury.


Moseley’s 1st half team:


1.       Craig Voisey

2.       Greg Sammons (Trialist)

3.       Colin Quigley

4.       Mathew Dew (Trialist)

5.       Dan Sanderson

6.       Mike Maltman

7.       Mathew Lowcock (Trialist)

8.       Mike Ellery

9.       Gareth Taylor

10.     Olly Thomas

11.     Jamie Hearn

12.     Andy Reay

13.     Jack Adams

14.     Mike Gillick

15.     Brad Hunt


Moseley’s 2nd half team:


1.  Anthony O’Donnell (rep Adam Caves 60 mins)

2.  Adam Caves (rep Richard Protherough 60 mins)

3.  Marshall Gadd

4.  Paul Spivey

5.  Steve Smith (Trialist)

6.  Mike Maltman (rep Charley Thomas 70 mins)

7.   Ben Pons

8.   Mike Ellery

9.   Gareth Taylor (rep  Sam Brown 60 mins)

10. Brad Davies

11. Billy Robinson

12. Greg King (rep Andy Reay 55 mins)

13. Jack Adams

14. Mike Gillick  

15. Anthony Carter


It was inevitable that the unfamiliarity of Moseley’s players should have led to some defensive misunderstandings and gaps at times during the game especially during Aberavon’s purple patch in the second half when the Wizards scored four successive tries.


The home sides ability to keep the ball alive and a lack of sufficient aggression at rucks and mauls by Moseley – despite an encouraging start to the second half – enabled space to be created for the Wizards well taken tries. The number of turnover balls obtained by the home side during the game was disappointing and Aberavon’s right winger was particularly effective when he was given space.


Moseley’s first half team contained only Craig Voisey in the front five from last season. It was therefore no surprise that there was some missed co-ordination in the line out especially as Greg Sammons, and Matthew Drew the new triallist hooker and 2nd row respectively had only arrived a couple of weeks before! However both these players worked hard in the loose and Sammons’s industry was rewarded by scoring Moseley’s first try.


While our own line out ball was somewhat erratic in the first half Dan Sanderson was particularly effective defensively stealing a number of Aberavon throws. He also showed some deft touches in the loose especially a delicate little layoff to Jack Adams for the centre to do a little trademark “chip and chase” for our third try.


The 2nd half line out was more solid on our own ball with Paul Spivey prominent and Adam Caves throwing in but there was little return against the throw. There was also some missed Moseley communication in the 2nd half when a seemingly set play long throw to the back of an extended Aberavon line out created a gap further forward for Aberavon to scamper through and score.


Our scrummaging improved during the second half especially towards the end but there seemed to be some uncomfortableness in the first half. Gareth Taylor led the side for 60 minutes of the game and his leadership was in evidence throughout. However he had difficulty with his line kicking in the swirling wind and he service was in contrast to the speed with which the Wizards moved the ball. This was improved when young Sam Brown came on half way through the second half and one excellent break resulted in Moseley’s last try.


Adams and Reay combined well during the first half but we saw little of Greg King in the second half as he went off after only a short while which was disappointing as we were keen to see what he could do. Ollie Thomas played at fly half during the first half and Greg Davies the second.


Overall from a Moseley perspective, there were some good signs in this match but also a number of things which the coaches will be keen to address. However you get the impression that there is a good side from among the players we had out there and with the returning walking wounded we could surprise a few people next season.




1st Half:
07 min: T – Aberavon: Richard Carter & C - Howard Thomas (7 - 0)

11 min: T – Moseley: Greg Sammons (7 - 5)
25 min: T – Moseley: Jamie Hearn & C – Ollie Thomas (7 - 12)
31 min: T – Aberavon: Richard Carter & C - Howard Thomas (14 - 12)
35 min: T – Moseley: Jack Adams & C – Ollie Thomas (14 - 19)

2nd Half:
55 min: T – Aberavon: Jamie Davies & C - Jamie Davies (21 - 19)

58 min: T – Aberavon: Marc Breeze & C - Jamie Davies (28 - 19)
62 min: T – Aberavon: Richard Carter (33 - 19)
65 min: T – Aberavon: Richard Carter & C - Jamie Davies (40 - 19)
75 min: T – Moseley: Gillick (?) & C – Brad Davies (40 - 26)

Wayne Davies