OL’s expectations of a “comfortable” win was met with firm resistance by a fired up Newbold side, as the league leaders visited Parkfield Rd.
A large crowd witnessed a hard fought, gripping encounter, played in excellent spirit, as Newbold secured their 3rd win on the trot, and retained 5th spot in the league. Laurentians move down to 2nd place, after 2 defeats on the bounce to Newbold & Kenilworth last week, putting a severe dent in any promotion aspirations.
A bright start for the home side, as Andrews kicked through to take play to the opposition 22 and a Bold scrum. The front row of Walton, Houghton and Allen exerted early pressure, resulting in a penalty, but Andrews was just wide with the kick.
It was all Newbold as they recycled quick ball, through the hard working back row of Hyde and Fereday, allowing play to remain in Laurentians half. Early frustrations leading to an extra 10 yards with the award of another penalty, but Andrews again, was just the wrong side of the upright.
Quick thinking play by Phil Reed then took play back to OL’s 5 metre line and another penalty award, this time Andrews was successful with his third attempt, to take Newbold to 3 -0. OL’s responded with a Jon Beanpenalty from near the 10 yard line, but he was well wide with his attempt.
Nick Walton made good ground from the half way, before the ball found its way to Phil Reed, who dummied and went through from 30 metres out for a fine score, Andrews added the conversion to make it 10 - 0.
Jon Bean responded with a penalty and then Andrews was successful with another for Bold to take the score to 13 -3.
OL’s started the 2nd half off at a furious pace, play immediately in the Home side 22, a penalty was awarded, but Bean hit the uprights. Mark Hyde took the rebound and sprinted 40 metres out of defence, backed up by Facer as Andrews then took play back to OL’s 22. A turnover by KJ and another break by Hyde kept up this momentum. OL’s were certainly not finished and their efforts were rewarded with a penalty. It was surprising that this was one of a number of kickable attempts where the kick to touch was taken, it was the first of a number that was to cost dearly.
OL’s driving maul took play to just a few metres out, a couple of months ago, this would have been a certain try, but Bold are made or sterner stuff these days and committed and resolute defending kept OL’s out.
Dan Obrien replaced Jon Bean with the kicking duties, but his first effort was also well wide. James Ferris came on as replacement and was immediately in the thick of the action, as he robbed Richard Parker of the ball at the base of the scrum.
As OL’s produced wave after wave of attacking play, Newbold dug deep, Andrews was a “nats whisker” away from an interception that would have won the game, but still the away side looked for another score. It eventually came, from a driving maul, when the referee adjudged Bold to have Dropped the maul and he awarded a penalty try. Maybe a harsh decision, as there had been no previous offences, but a deserved 7 pointer to take the score to 13 - 10, as back they came in the final 5 minutes.
A superb all round display and there could be no disputing the MOM award for an awesome display by Mark Hyde.
Newbold travel up the M6 for the visit to Bedworth next week, kick off is at 2.15.