RUGBY: Understrength Saints 2nds take on Newbold


Short on numbers but not commitment

Newbold 3rds 41

Saints 2nds 31

Saints may have been short on numbers but not on commitment and sheer cussedness as they turned up at Newbold for their league game with just 11 players after late cry offs had decimated the original selection.

With the home side having a full squad plus replacements, Saints were prepared to mix up the sides and play a friendly, but Newbold had a different agenda. It was agreed that the intrepid 11 would face 13 and sundry replacements but with passive scrums.

Not surprisingly the Bold exerted early pressure but some tigerish tackling and poor handling kept the score sheet blank for 20 minutes before they grabbed a brace of tries. Saints hit back with a try from a tap penalty and began to establish some rhythm as they gained confidence. For the rest of the game they matched the home side’s scoring but failed to make up the initial deficit for an honourable defeat by 41pts to 31.

Under the circumstances this was a remarkable achievement against a highly successful team which enjoyed a two-man advantage throughout. The players gave everything and should be able to build on this through the rest of the season.