Preview: Aberavon v Bargoed

Aberavon (7th – 63 points) welcome Bargoed (15th – 18 points) to the Talbot Athletic Ground on Saturday in the Principality Premiership, kick off 2:30pm.

The Bulls have won three of their twenty games this season but have lost all eleven of their games played away from home.

They started off with three straight losses as they went down to Llandovery, Newport and Carmarthen. They did pick up a losing bonus point in the Quins game. Their first win came in the third week of September when they beat Cross Keys at Bargoed Park. They then went down to both Cardiff and Bedwas, with the Bulls picking up two points in the loss to Bedwas. The Bulls then recorded back-to-back bonus point wins as they defeated both Llanelli and Aberavon (38 – 18) in October. Since the bonus point win over the Wizards, Bargoed have lost twelve straight games, losing to RGC 1404, Neath, Swansea, Ebbw Vale, Pontypridd, Llandovery, Newport, Merthyr, Carmarthen, Cross Keys, Bedwas and Llanelli. During this run, they have only picked up one bonus point, and that was in their narrow loss to Cross Keys in January.

Looking at the Premiership, in “attack”, Bargoed have scored 18.1 points on average per game (ranked 15th) and 2.2 tries (ranked 15th). In “defence” they have conceded 34.2 points on average per game (ranked 15th) and 4.4 tries (ranked 15th). Aberavon have scored 22.0 points per game (ranked 9th) and 2.9 tries (ranked 8th), and conceded 19.1 points (ranked 6th) and 2.7 tries (ranked 8th).

Head-to-head, Aberavon and Bargoed have only previously met three times in the Welsh National League. Two seasons ago when the sides met at the Talbot Athletic Ground, the Wizards won 45 – 25. Last season, at Bargoed Park, the Bulls won 16 – 14 on the day a 4.4 magnitude earthquake hit South Wales, whilst this season, Bargoed had a bonus point win when they beat Aberavon 38 – 18 in October.

The referee for Saturday’s game is Dewi Phillips, aided by Tom Spurrier and Mark Jones.

TEAM P W D L PF PA PTS
Merthyr 23 18 0 5 651 393 91
Cardiff 23 18 1 4 696 469 89
Pontypridd 21 16 0 5 730 374 79
Llandovery 24 16 1 7 652 408 79
Newport 25 15 2 8 629 551 77
Ebbw Vale 24 16 1 7 541 423 76
Aberavon 22 14 2 6 485 415 69
Swansea 24 13 0 11 537 451 65
Rygbi Gogledd Cymru 1404 22 11 1 10 552 456 64
Carmarthen Quins 24 10 1 13 488 454 56
Bedwas 24 8 1 15 515 667 43
Bridgend Ravens 22 8 0 14 427 517 43
Llanelli 24 6 1 17 450 620 35
Cross Keys 22 5 1 16 452 681 34
Bargoed 23 4 0 19 400 756 22
Neath 23 1 0 22 335 905 3