Away to Shelford 5th
Eastern Counties 3 west
Shelford 5ths 25 V March Bears 31
March resumed their league games and traveled to play Shelford 5ths, late call offs left The Bears with just 15 players for the game. Having too play a couple of players out of position who played exceptionally well with Skipper Simon Althoff standing in at loose head prop for the first time, and Veteran Gary Parmenter playing on the wing.
Two players back from long term injury James Garton and Jonathan Bevis.
March started quickly with a try from James Knight within the first few minutes of the game conversion missed (5-0), Shelford hit straight back to level the scores with an unconverted try (5-5) .
Quick ball from the forwards enabled Stewart Rigby to break through the Shelford defensive line, to score and convert his try (12-5).
Stand-off Ben Brooke received the ball in his own half and danced his way around the Shelford defense to touch down under the post and converted his own try (19-5).
Center James Garton whose powerful runs had the Shelford players grasping at fresh air, eventually touched down for his first try of the game to give march a comfortable 24-5 lead at half time.
James Garton added his second try of the game which was converted by James Knight to go 31-5 in front, Shelford then took total control of the game, drawing the March players into an “arm wrestle” of a game, the bigger Shelford pack started to gain lots of possession dominating the game and forcing March into desperate defending, missed tackles allowed Shelford to slowly reduce “The Bears“ lead running in 4 unconverted try’s to bring the score from 31-5 to 31-25.
With 3 minutes left on the clock and Shelford looking for the try and conversion to win the game, March quickly moved the ball up field forcing several errors from Shelford, enabling The Bears to run the clock down with slow ball from rucks and mauls a knock on from Shelford saw the last scrum of the day as March kicked the ball off the park as the full time whistle went.
This was a Game that March were fortunate to win, they went completely away from their match plan got involved with a style of game that suited Shelford, but for the 5 missed conversions from Shelford they would have lost their first league game. The players knew that they were lucky to come away with a win, what they did wrong and will put this right at training this coming Wednesday evening.
Well done to Shelford 5ths who played exceptionally well to subdue the March Bears in the second half.