RUGBY: Newbold on road to Twickenham

Newbold v Wellingborough last week
Newbold v Wellingborough last week
Share this article

Travelling supporters ecstatic at cup win at Crewe

Midlands Intermediate Cup


Crewe & Nantwich 10

Newbold on Avon 17

The three-hour trip and delayed kick off didn’t stop Newbold from putting on their best performance of the season, writes Alan Bale. Crewe were beaten for the first time two weeks ago by Leek who top the league, so it was always going to be a tough game.

Newbold made eight changes to the previous week, but probably the most significant was the return of flanker KJ Henry, who after a month out, stormed back into the fray with a superb performance. The inclusion of a number of last seasons colts in Rich Suddens, Rich Bannister, Rhys Webster Declan George and Connor Gallagher, who all put in monster efforts were also vital.

Skipper Nick Walton being selected at prop was also, only ever going to boost the front row. Newbold played against the a strong wind in the first half and it was George who cleared for Newbold early on. Newbold’s defence was strong and aggressive, something that has been lacking, but not today. Crewe missed an early penalty attempt, but Newbold responded well with Reed taking play into the opposition half.

It was the Bold that were applying pressure, as they kicked into the corner. Micky Pails won the ball from the line out and the driving maul saw Danny Treharne on the end of it to give Newbold a deserved lead, Reed converted superbly, from the touchline. Newbold’s dominance in the scrum ensured that they had a large share of the possession, Tom Newbold, led the way with a catch and drive, supported by KJ Henry.

Crewe really came at Newbold, but some huge hits kept them out, with more outstanding defence, Danny Facer stood larger than normal, working well with Treharne and Henry. Have such a quick back line ensured that Newbolds speedy back three were able to get up quickly and ensure the ball was immediately run back, this made a huge difference throughout the game. Crewe did land a penalty and brought the score back to 7-3, but it was that pressure on the ball that was telling as Bold caught Nantwich on their own line, winning a scrum as they were forced to touch down.

It was from this scrum as the ball went across the back line and back again and it was Stuey Houghton who went over for a magnificent, and deserved unconverted try, but more importantly, a 12-3 lead. Crewe came back with an easy penalty award, but surprisingly missed the attempt in front of the posts. Daz Dean received a yellow card, as Crewe ran a quick penalty and scored under the posts, bringing the score back to 12-10. Ben Nuttall came on and immediately made an impact, as the referee blew for half time. No doubt it was to be this first half performance that ultimately won the game for Newbold.

Newbold started strongly, Facer picked up from the scrum to find Phil Reed whose fine run through the gap created space for Shaun Pollard, improving each game, rounding off a cracking score for 17 -10. Declan George went blind from a scrum to find speedster Bannister who was unluckily adjudged to have knocked on as he touched down. Reed & Henry then took the ball on and Pollard was pulled down just short.

Rich Suddens then showed his pace as he went close. Crewe came back at Newbold and as the Game went into fully 13 minutes of time added on, Newbold defended as they had done the whole game and there was just no way through for the Cheshire side.

The ref blew up after 15 minutes of added time and the few Bold supporters that travelled were in ecstasy.

It’s been a frustrating few weeks, but this should surely pave the way for many more such performances.

A fantastic victory! Declan George was man of the match, but this was a superb team performance, just reward for skipper Nick Walton’s efforts these last few weeks and Newbold are just two games away from Twickenham.