CLOSE BUT NO CIGAR IN IMPROVED PERFORMANCE
Bournville 21 Derby 27
For only the second time this season, Bourns played a home game at Bournbrook where the new AGP pitch stood the test of the pre match snow flurry. Bourns had selection issues with the forwards, with several injuries and unavailability to contend with. On loan loose head prop Jonah Boyce went straight into the starting line up, number 8 Matt Dickerson, stepped up to second row and flanker Chris Morgan once again stepped out of self retirement to play at openside. The backs were re-freshed with James Hussey coming back into the centres, letting Henry Hughes have a crack on the wing. Long serving prop Ian Coles answered a call to the bench with young flanker James Atkinson joining him on the bench with Luke Smith.
Derby have one of the largest packs in the league which they use well getting around the corner, however it was the lighter Bourns pack which clicked into gear from the off. After 2 minutes, Bourns knocked on just short of the line. From the resulting scrum, the Bourns pack drove and took it against the head. The ball was moved swiftly in field and Hussey crashed over for the score duly converted by Warner for a early 7-0 lead. Unfortunatley, Bourns turned that positive into a negative as a succession of penalties were conceded at the breakdown, allowing territory and a platform for the Derby forwards to carry. Bourns repelled everything, but in clearing their lines, they were guilty of not finding touch which allowed Derby to counter. One such missed touch find after 15 minutes could not be defended and a derby forward took a pass near the line to score under the posts which with the conversion, tied up the scores at 7 a piece.
Bourns were doing well on the opposition scrum with Jonah Boyce asserting himself and also on the opposition line out with several steals but on 20 minutes, a controversial try was awarded to Derby. A grubber kick through by the Derby scrum half headed towards the corner flag. Their winger won the race to collect the ball but his left foot was clearly in touch before he took possession of the ball and squeezed in at the corner. I wont comment further, so a set back at 7-12 down. The rest of the first half was played in the Derby half but handling errors in the 22
let the visitors off the hook and the score remained 7-12 at the break.
Derby started the second half the better and after 45 minutes they scored a try following a poor kick chase and a couple of missed tackles saw the hooker score near the posts. However Bourns kept going and on 50 minutes, a quick defensive press on half way saw the Derby midfield hit. The ball bounced up of a head and Henry Hughes caught it and sprinted in so back to a five point gap 14-19. Bourns had the ascendancy for the next ten minutes but more spillages in the Derby 22 spoiled promising positions. On 60 minutes, Bourns were offside and the penalty was taken to extend the lead to 8 points for the visitors. Bourns continued with attack after attack but the Derby line could not be breached as Derby scrambled in defence. Against the run of play, Derby did score a try which started on half way as the Derby forwards got beyond the gain line and good hands saw the full back in the corner after 75 minutes. With at least a converted try required to secure a losing bonus point, Bourns hammered at the Derby line. A drive from a line out was halted near the line, but super sub Ian Coles grabbed the ball and somehow burrowed his way to the line leaving Alex Warner the chance to get the bonus point with the conversion on the 15 meter line to the right. The kick sailed over and the final whistle went for a 21-27 defeat.
A much improved performance all round over the 80 minutes. Tidy up the errors and kicking game and results will surely change into wins. Big effort by the forwards this week and star man was on loan prop Jonah Boyce for his scrum work and aggressive carries in the loose.
Next week we travel to Doncaster Phoenix who ground share with the Championship side Doncaster Knights. They play an expansive game but we did beat them earlier in the season coming back from a 19 point deficit.
15, Tom Jarvis, 14, Henry Hughes, 13, James Hussey, 12, Marc Coulson, 11, Warren Oliver, 10, Mitch McGahan, 9, Alex Warner, 8, Drew Harper (capt), 7, Ejike Uzoigwe, 6, Chris Morgan, 5, Steve Smith, 4, Matt Dickerson, 3, Terry Sigley, 2, Alex Willis, 1, Jonah Boyce, 16, Ian Coles, 17, James Atkinson, 18, Luke Smith.
From the Photo Man
Find touch, find touch, find touch. That's my input on the match report.
HERE are the photos from the game. Not as many as usual I'm sorry to say.
Sully - Bournville's always friendly (and free) photographer