Spa had some very positive moments with Tom Daplyn and Simon Mallard linking on the far flank to put pressure on the Sutton defence
A weakened Spa squad took on Midlands 1 West league leaders, Sutton Coldfield, and suffered a crushing defeat, shipping 12 tries in the process. However, before you reach for the “black armbands” it’s worth noting that in their three previous league matches, Sutton have amassed 240 points, bringing their total so far for the season to 1110!
The poor crowd attendance, perhaps summed up the appetite for this fixture,with an emphatic win for Sutton! Spa’s inability to be able to field a recognised full Front Row, led to uncontested scrums from the outset. This was accepted with good grace from the playing staff of Sutton.
Sutton scored their first try in the opening minute and collected a second, converted try, soon after. They had to wait a further 15 or so minutes before they added to their total and in the interim, Spa’s Sam Nunn had slotted over a penalty goal. Spa had some very positive moments with Tom Daplyn and Simon Mallard linking on the far flank to put pressure on the Sutton defence. However they were finding it difficult to contend with the pace of the opposition attack and conceded three more tries before the break. Spa’s resolute tackling ensured that no more damage was done and one particular tackle from Craig Smith, in text book style, prevented a certain try.
Half Time: 3 – 34
The second half more or less mirrored the pattern of the first period, with Sutton Coldfield managing to deal with the invention and pace of Spa’s backline and in the meantime, adding to their own points total. Five more tries were conceded, before Spa were able to produce some top quality play and engineer a cracking try. “Patch” Northover, set Alex Carroll off on a run in Spa territory and as the fly-half cleverly drew the opposition towards him, he sent a crisp pass out to Craig Smith, on the near wing. The big Lock, who had reverted to Back Row for today’s match, set off down the wing at a pace that was worthy of the “Cheltenham Festival”. He eluded two tackles then used his turn of speed to wrong foot Sutton’s full back, leaving him floored and raced in under the posts. Northover added the conversion. This was a just reward for the immense effort shown by the squad, in what was always going to be difficult circumstances.
One final converted score by Sutton brought an end to proceedings.
Full Time: 10 - 76
Next week Spa return to league duty with a trip to Pershore, kick-off 3.00pm