Report by Colin Harriman
The team travelled to Nottingham with at least 4 players down due to Holidays but each player stepped up to the mark.
It was always going to be a tough game because Nottingham could field a big squad of 20 plus players, with rolling substitutions it meant Nottingham could be constantly fresh. If Mansfield were feeling the strain they did not show it from whistle to whistle they played at a full and fast pace.
Nottingham scored the first Try at 06:30 minutes despite stout Mansfield defence but missed conversion.
Mansfield are showing great determination and support for each other previously heads would have been down and spirits low. Not a bit of it today and at 13:00 minutes Regan Hubbard went over the try line dragging 2 defenders with him and he then went on to convert for 2 more points.
Connor Waterman put in a trade mark blistering pace at 21:00 minutes to score a try in the corner a difficult conversion was missed narrowly.
Nottingham came straight back from the kick off to score a converted try.
The second half started in the same vein and Nottingham scored a converted Try in the first 2 minutes.
Sam Potts put in a strong performance as usual despite being closely marked by the Nottingham forwards and scored a try with 9 minutes to go. Again length and angle denied the conversion.
The rest of the game was a deadlock with both Fullbacks being used frequently to defend deep kicked balls.
Full Time Score Nottingham 19-17 Mansfield.
High praise was given by the Nottingham Coach who said that this game was the closest they have been pushed for some time.
An honourable mention goes to Regan Hubbard for a technically perfect cross field kick that George Holloway could run on to. If the dead ball area was an 1” longer it would have ended with a spectacular finish.
Mentions also to Jack Hodkinson and Huw Stacey for again and again putting their bodies on the line to defend they got knocked down but they certainly got up again!
There is a gap for the 15 man game whilst training takes place for the 7s tournament at Nottingham on 15th April. Next full training session will be on the 17th April ready for the last game of the season against Matlock on the 22nd. I don’t think there can be anybody who watched their last encounter that is not waiting with baited breath for this game.