Barry II returned to action following a weekend of inactivity with Caerau Ely their visitors.
With Glyn Pirso in sole charge for the weekend, he welcomed back Chris Deyes and Rhys O’Sullivan into the starting line up for some much needed experience, whilst new signing Ashton Allen awaited his debut from the replacements bench.
With a more settled side, Barry tried to start the match with a pace that would put their opponents in the back foot. However, it was Caerau who came out on top in the early exchanges, and it was only a bit of away indiscipline that cost them a chance in opening the scoring when they were camped on top of Barry’s line.
Undeterred Caerau continued probing and this time they gathered more patience and composure in their attack, resulting in a successful drop goal opportunity to give them the early advantage.
Rattled, Barry rallied and utilised the direct running of Dave Provis and Dominic Busuttil in midfield, instantly causing havoc in the Caerau defence. Opportunities were created but were thwarted by a combination of excellent last ditch tackling and the ball not sticking to hands.
Eventually the pressure had to tell. Barry turned the screw in the scrum with the front row of O’Sullivan, Bowditch and Brooke dominant. The resultant territory and possession saw Busutill crash through to score. Richie O’Sullivan was successful with the conversion to give Barry the lead.
Barry now had the momentum with them and fully capitalised. With the Caerau defence on the back foot once again, it was down to Luke Hewitson to finish off a fine move to score his second try of the season. O’Sullivan made no mistake from the tee to increase Barry’s lead.
If Barry were expecting an easy ride from then on they were gravely mistaken. Caerau came back either side of the interval to continue to ask question of the Barry defence in both tight and out wide.
Having reduced the deficit with an unconverted try, Caerau looked to complete their comeback but the pressure was relieved when scrum-half Tom Cotter scored his first try for the club to give Barry some breathing space. The extras were missed.
Caerau came back again with another unconverted try to bring the game back within one score, but Barry held out for their first win of the calendar year, emerging victorious 19-13.
Next weekend there are no games at Reservoir Field due to Six Nations but all games will be screened live at the clubhouse.
Team: Ryan; Mepham, Provis, Busuttil, Hewitson; Rich O’Sullivan, Cotter; Rhys O’Sullivan, Bowditch, Brooke; Hall, Deyes; Jones, Morris, Rolfe
Replacements: Ring, Corson, Allen, M O’Sullivan