Newbold On Avon 38
Midlands East 2(South)
A fantastic day for playing rugby, a large crowd and almost a full strength side ran onto the Cut Throat Lane pitch for what should be the second place decider and a play off spot, writes Alan Bale.
It was the home side who looked the sharpest and got off to a great start as Vickers immediately took play into the Newbold half. It took a quite simple break down the right to expose Newbold early on as a three man overlap led to an easy first try, converted by Vickers to put Wellingborough ahead after a couple of minutes.
Disaster struck then for the Bold as Phil Reed had a kick charged down as the ball popped up and straight into the arms of the centre for a second converted try and 14-0 after only five minutes.
But Newbold’s magnificent pack drove the scrum forward as Danny Facer secured a riposte to bring his side back into the game, Andrews converting from wide out for 14 -7.
As the tries flowed, it was Wellingborough who opened Newbold up once more, running wide to score their third unconverted try for 19-7 with only 15 minutes gone.
Newbold’s back line were clearly second best to the lightning quick Boro backs, so it really wasn’t the day to make any number of enforced errors as Andrews kicked straight into touch to keep the pressure on his team. Back came the Bold, through Declan George as he carved out an opening for Warner who went through for an unconverted score and 19-12. Every time Vickers received the ball he looked dangerous and his kick behind the back line created havoc and another unconverted score for 24-12.
Newbold’s front row were outstanding with Walton, Dean and Allen dominant. As Dean went off, it looked a massive task for Newbold, but Nuttall came on at hooker, clearly up for it and Newbold rose to the challenge. They were supported by Hyde and Pails and the hard working back row of KJ Henry, Treharne and Facer.
Vickers missed an easy penalty and it was Warner’s turn to make a mistake as his mis-timed pass led to another easy score for the home side from some 50 metres out and make the score 31-12.
Newbold are made of sterner stuff these days and Ben Nuttall picked up after another strong scrum to drive over from close range, as Andrews converted right on the half time whistle for a score of 31 -19. Vickers’ well placed kicking continue to pose huge problems for Bold as he took his side straight into the Bold 22. Wellingborough put themselves in a superb position as they ran through some weak tackling to score again to make it 38 -19. Newbold looked down and out as another interception took the score to 45-19 and their promotion hopes in tatters. Joss Andrews scissors with Warner gave Newbold a sniff as he scored in the corner and an unconverted try meant it was 45 -24.
Wellingborough were given a yellow card for taking out Tom Newbold in the line and this helped spark a mini revival. Bond scored for Newbold as the score went to 45-31 .
Possibly not one of Phil Reed’s best games, but he did spend most of the night at the hospital and there is no denying his ability as he jinked his way through the home defence to score an excellent try.
Andrews converted to take the final score to 45- 38 and Newbold had played their get out of jail card to achieve two bonus points and keep them a point ahead of Wellingborough in the runner up spot.
Their backs hadn’t been able to match the outstanding front eight performance but they were up against the best number 10 in the league in Vickers and it had made for an extremely entertaining contest.
This leaves the Parkfield Road side to decide their own fate away to Northampton BBOB next week. A bonus points win will secure them a play off spot regardless of any other results.
Spartans IIs 10 Newbold IIIs 55
Newbold travelled to Sutton Coldfield for their penultimate league game. On a dry and spacious pitch the visitors intent was clear from the start they had pace and they were going to try and use it.
This caused its own problems with a series of knock ons and missed timed passes costing numerous scoring opportunities. Newbold were always on top and looked like scoring from anywhere. This happened when Tom Clarke picked the ball up on halfway and was given the outside by his opposite number which was an error, try time converted by Shaw. Paddy Cunningham was having a fine game and was the next on the score sheet again converted by Martin. Tom Clarke again went in from long distance followed by Jake Fletcher who was now playing in the centre, Tom completed a well deserved hat-trick and then Ryan ran one in from half way after a sniping interception. Half-time 0-38.
Both sides made changes at half time, the home team bringing on some experience in the back row. This had an instant impact on the game. Pressure was put on the Newbold line for the first time and after some quick ball the Spartans full back touched down.
The game was a lot more even and it took a couple of try saving tackles from Paddy to stop the home side going over again. Newbold decide it was time to score again and up popped Tom Clarke to go over for his fourth again converted by Martin. Paul Love was then the next player on the score sheet. Spartans grabbed another and the scoring for the day was completed by Jake Fletcher after a smart pick up from the base of the scrum again converted by Martin. A scrappy win away from home was a good effort from the weary Newbold players.