RUGBY: Lions win top of the table battle

Rugby Lions v Evesham
Rugby Lions v Evesham

Rugby remain unbeaten and eight points clear

Midlands 4 West (South)

Rugby Lions 21

Evesham 3

In every campaign there are season defining games, a tough Evesham at Webb Ellis Road who, going into the fixture were in second spot seven points behind Lions, was likely going to have a huge bearing on our season, writes Player Coach Rob Dignum.

Lions are there to be shot at, a club steeped with a proud history, indeed without wishing to sound vain, we are everybody’s cup final, and the game opposition raise themselves most for.

Lions were pumped up and keen to start big. On a proud day I was first out of the changing rooms accompanied by two sons Alfie and Austin… soon after, Lions raced out the traps with wing Jonny Ure scoring on five minutes out wide after fine work from the pack at the base of an attacking scrum.

Evesham, as we knew they would then played themselves back into the game, their back row excellent at the breakdown, all masters in the dark arts of pilfering ball. The official was very fair to both sides at both ruck and maul and on the whole had an excellent game.

On two occasions we were awarded penalties which Gaz Bott duly converted, and Evesham knocked over one themselves; seeing Lions take an 11-3 lead with half an hour played.

The best try of the game came soon after, fine support work from everyone and some excellent offloading that saw Jamie Mapletoft cross out wide to go in at the break 16-3.

Such were the number of injuries, the official found an additional 13 minutes of playing time. And so for 52 minutes of the second half, no score; now this may all sound a little uneventful, you could not be more wrong, the game captivating, with Lions having to attack from deep and keep the ball for a number of phases.

In the final play of the game however, Evesham kicked out of defence to our new winger, regular open side Josh Lockley, who fielded the ball brilliantly, ran it back with some impetus beating two defenders to feed another new winger, hooker Ollie Machon to score on the far touchline to put the icing on the cake, final score 21-3.

A truly wonderful team performance that answered many questions and will go down as one of the significant games of this season I believe.

We now look forward to taking on Harbury in the semi-final of the County Shield on Sunday (December 28) at Leamington RFC and facing Buxton away in the quarter final of the Midlands Vase, Saturday, January 3, both 2.15pm kick offs.

From myself and all involved at Lions, thank you for your very appreciated support, a very merry Christmas and a happy new year to you.