RUGBY: Good win for Newbold Colts

Callum Whiteside scoring for Newbold Colts against Tamworth    PICTURES BY STEVE SMITH
Callum Whiteside scoring for Newbold Colts against Tamworth PICTURES BY STEVE SMITH

Victory over Tamworth who had only conceded 54 points all season

Warwickshire Colts League

Paddy Price scoring in Newbold Colts' win

Paddy Price scoring in Newbold Colts' win

Newbold Colts 24

Tamworth Colts 14

The Colts, looking to clinch a place in the play-offs to decide the League champions, welcomed top of the table Tamworth to Parkfield Road.

The Colts have improved tremendously as the season has progressed and came into the game unbeaten in 2017 and with a 50 -point win over local rivals Rugby Lions and a solid win over Syston in recent weeks.

Curtley Bale with the ball with Fin Reed, Harrison Davies and Fin Williamson nearest in support

Curtley Bale with the ball with Fin Reed, Harrison Davies and Fin Williamson nearest in support

But this was going to be a tough match – with Tamworth having been clear winners in the previous game and having conceded only 54 points all season.

Once an able substitute referee was found (thank you, Mr Shaw), the game got underway - ‘Bold defending the slope.

Committed runs and lots of probing kicks meant a lot of tackling and hard carrying was needed to stem the Tamworth attacks.

A great clearance kick by Oisin McKenna on 12 minutes was chased like a man possessed by winger Ben Farrell, who put such pressure on the Tamworth full back he gained about 40m for the team and some welcome respite.

Callum Whiteside in possession, with Curtley Bale, Harrison Davies and Oisin McKenna

Callum Whiteside in possession, with Curtley Bale, Harrison Davies and Oisin McKenna

This typified the effort all half from both forwards and backs. With the hill advantage, Tamworth just had the upper hand in the scrums and on 18 minutes, elected to take a scrum right in front of the posts. The front row of Curtley Bale, Tom Love and George Jarman put in a great effort to disrupt and with the ball away slowed a bit, Carter Murphy put in a thumping tackle and managed to rip the ball free allowing Oisin to clear.

Tamworth were not to be denied and a well constructed driving maul saw a crash ball beat the ‘Bold defence and Tamworth stole in for a converted score. Despite almost continual pressure, the ‘Bold defence held for the remainder of the half .

‘Bold handling errors stopped promising attacks a couple of times before a series of strong carries by Paddy Price, and Fin Reed led to a penalty after nine minutes of the second half.

A quick tap and Paddy fed Curtley, who blasted over to get the ‘Bold scoreboard ticking. Continued hard carrying by the forwards and great ball usage by Kear Bale and Carter had ‘Bold with a penalty in the Tamworth 22.

A miss-move saw Oisin flash the ball from the back of the scrum wide to Callum Whiteside who crashed through to nudge ‘Bold ahead.

Tamworth came back from the kick-off but a steal saw captain Fin Williamson set off on a searing run, breaking tackle after tackle to take the team 40m up the pitch and deep into Tamworth’s half.

Kear fed Carter who dabbed a great kick through and Callum chased down the winger, turning the ball over and feeding the rampaging pack. Paddy carried the ball the last few metres to get over – with Oisin nonchalantly drop kicking the conversion from half way to the touchline having dispensed with his misfiring kicking tee…

‘Bold then had a period of over five minutes defending against a team that showed why they don’t lose many.

But with no way through, a kick through was touched down and the 22m dropout cleared the lines. From the ensuing ruck in midfield, ‘Bold managed to get a foot on the ball and kick through and win possession.

Great rucking and recycling led to Tamworth in retreat and the ball was smartly whipped along the line to Callum, who burst past his opposite number and shrugged off the covering defence to dot down for his second of the day. Oisin again dropkicked the conversion.

A spilt restart gave Tamworth a foothold in the ‘Bold 22 and despite committed efforts they manufactured an overlap and got in at the corner for a final score of 24-14.

Another committed, concentrated performance from the Colts who appear to be hitting their rhythm at the business end of the season. Southam next up in the Warwickshire Cup.