Victory over Paviors maintains ten-point lead at top of table
Midlands 1 East
Paviors RFC 12
Ex-England 2003 World Cup winning hooker Mark ‘Ronnie’ Regan was the after dinner speaker at Newbold’s pre-match Vice Presidents Luncheon, writes Sean O’Brien.
In his Bristolian twang he warmed up the 150 or so VPs in anticipation of an exciting match at Parkfield Road. Conditions were fine but extremely windy, Newbold playing into the wind in the first half.
Getting straight to the point, Newbold secured the bonus point win that they came for, and in truth the result never felt in doubt.
Paviors are a neat and tidy side, that play well as a unit, have a productive line-out, they defend well, and they are the only side that Newbold hadn’t beaten in the league this season, having been held 31-31 in Nottinghamshire back in October.
Notwithstanding this, Newbold could have blown them away if they used the ball better when in possession.
Potential scores went begging because of a blunt refusal at times, to just pass the ball to someone in a better position than themselves. Frustrating.
I could cut and paste the first score from any previous match report; A line-out within the Paviors 22, caught by Tom Dixon, trundled on by the forwards, taken on by Ben Dawes, and finished by Lloyd Warner who had disguised himself as a forward to claim the points out wide.
Within five minutes Newbold scored again, this time a more attractive piece of rugby altogether.
On the right, Douza Ziba, smiling as always, made a nice dart through the defence. From the breakdown the ball was moved left along the line for Lloyd Warner to dot down on the very same spot he had done just a short while before. The wind put paid to the conversion attempts.
Paviors started to enjoy some possession of their own and courtesy of good footwork from their fullback, eventually danced unopposed through Newbold’s defence to score and convert. 10-7.
I’m struggling to recall anything else worth writing about for the next 20 minutes. Nothing really happened.
The only real highlight was Rocco the Bulldog running onto the pitch and trying to eat the ball.
Newbold exerted some pressure on Paviors, earning penalty after penalty. Line-out catch and drive tactics prevailed, the forwards made a few charges for the line and grafter Ben Dawes crashed over next to the posts for a converted try.
Half time score 17-7 to Newbold, and everyone looked forward to the avalanche of Newbold tries in the second half, playing with the wind behind them. But it never happened.
It would be wrong not to give Paviors credit for their second half performance. They were the better side in the second half.
As far as second half scoring goes, Danny Treharne – on his welcome return from long term injury – scored from the back of a driving maul. Dan O’Brien converted.
Paviors scored a well-deserved try also, but the wind scuppered the conversion attempt.
The final score was therefore 24-12. The brevity of the second half write-up reflects the game to a certain extent. At times the supporters were left hoping that Rocco the Bulldog would come back (Rocco 2).
We will never knock a bonus point win against a decent side. Every game can’t be a thriller either, and the players put in a good shift as always. But with their dominance they should score more points, and maybe as the pitches harden up a bit we’re going to have to move the ball a little better in broken play.