A poor first half was too big a handicap despite much improved second half display
With Burton ‘A’ XV being unable to find any opposition this week in the fixture pool two or three of their more eager players offered their services to bolster the ‘B’ XV sixteen man squad for this fixture against a strong-looking Wolverhampton side.
With old habits dying hard the match started badly for Burton with weak tackling letting Wolverhampton move the ball about and break the home defensive line almost at will. However, it was the home side who scored first when a great tackle by Adam Clayton dislodged the ball from opposition hands and winger Dewi Williams scooped up the loose ball to race fifty metres and score and put Burton 5-0 in the lead. But this only proved to stir Wolves into productive efforts as they drove forward to score three tries, two converted, as the Burton defence crumbled under the constant pressure of their onslaught.
Trailing 5- 19 Burton pulled-up their socks and began to put more effort into the game and at last started to show that they knew how to tackle and this resulted in the game becoming more even. Unfortunately, a penalty goal by the opposition just before the break saw them increase their lead to 5-22.
The second half saw a Burton side full of endeavour and spirit get stuck into the opposition and with Will Peach entering the fray it was Burton who began to look the better side. First Peach scored a try from a lovely break down the blindside and he then converted this to reduce the deficit to 12-22. Then after some great forward inter-passing involving Clayton, John Collett, Pete Mason and Matt Smith the ball passed through the hands of Simon Paupe, Peach and Alex Jardine before giving Ali Eastwood a chance to race round the full back and score under the posts. Peach added the extra points and cut Wolves lead to just three points at 19-22.
But from the restart Wolves capitalised on Burton poor handling of the kick to burst up field, set up a ruck and then spin the ball out to score a try wide out and increase their lead to 19-27.
Burton were undaunted by this set back and another great lineout take by Mason saw Paupe feed Peach, who dummied his way through and when about to be tackled threw a long looping pass to winger Eastwood who gathered to race in for his second try of the day. Peach again converted and Burton now trailed by only one point, 26-27, with six minutes to go.
Unfortunately despite six minutes of constant domination and control Burton could not get the elusive points to grab victory and were left to savour the taste of defeat. But praise should go to all Burton’s efforts for the way in which they nearly snatched victory from defeat, and special mention is deserving of Colts Dale Mellor, Alex Fairbrother and Jamie Gibbons who all performed well in this senior fixture.