As the season draws to a close in Midlands 2 West South, with Spa only having two leagues game left to play,
it will be evident to those who regularly support their teams, how strong the standard of rugby is at this level. Also, with most Clubs in this league having relatively small playing squads, it is apparent that unless you can field your strongest side at all times, you are at a distinct disadvantage.
Leamington’s recent poor form has coincided with a lack of continuity in the side, due to injury and unavailability and on Saturday they were finally well beaten by a side that earlier in the season they had comprehensively beaten, scoring 54 points in the process.
Spa had the worst possible start to the game as they went behind to a penalty goal in the first minute.
They quickly recovered from this set back and Craig Smith and Mike Kelly combined to set up a promising break. Then “Patch” Northover launched an enormous “up and under”, which caused confusion in the home defence.
With Spa seemingly settling into the game, they failed to follow up their own kick ahead and watched helplessly as the home side ran in a try. Kidderminster then turned up the heat with two further scores, the latter following a strong surge by their forwards.
Leamington were struggling to match the tempo of the opposition, however, they were dominating the line-out, with Simon Harry and Craig Smith both in superb form. It was Smith who was instrumental in getting Spa on the score sheet as broke clear and sent Northover in for a try.
Half Time: 22 – 5
Spa had a very bright start to the second period; Northover sent through a couple of penetrating kicks ahead, before Simon Dudley, raced through with the ball and set up an impressive drive for his forwards. As the Spa pack edged closer to the home try line, Northover claimed the ball and sent Tom Daplyn in for a try. Leamington continued to impress in the lineout and at 22 – 10, the game looked evenly balanced.
Spa, however, continued to struggle to get any cohesion into their open play and when Kidderminster hit back, they failed to clear their line after a concerted period of pressure and conceded a further converted try.
Spa’s, Simon Dudley, continued to probe and test the home defence with some elusive running, which Kidderminster found difficult to contend with. The Spa Forwards stuck to their task throughout, although they were finding Kidderminster a tough nut to crack.
In the last quarter of the match the home side scored two further tries and were worthy winners on the day.
Full Time: 46 – 10
Spa will welcome a well earned rest over Easter and return to league rugby on the 14th April with a home game against Cheltenham North, kick-off 3.00pm.