Harborough Win Battle with Bosworth
On a wet sticky pitch with drizzle in the air, Harborough 1sts overcame a determined and well drilled Market Bosworth team.
It didn't take long for Harborough to get out of the blocks as the home side dominated the opening exchanges and distributed the ball and Ed Parker capitalised scoring after the game was only a few minutes old. Josh Purnell converted as Harborough's solid start was rewarded on the scoreboard. Loz Joel scored out wide after slick Harborough handling with Purnell slotting the conversion from near the touchline.
This score seemed to spur the visitors into action and they continued to recycle the ball and push deep into Harborough territory. Bosworth had a long period of possession but Harborough's defence held firm with Sumpter, Atwiine, Godefroy and Plant putting in some fine tackles. Tim Brown had a galloping run and hit a maul with such intensity that it probably got picked up by the British Geological Survey (BGS) seismology team.
Harborough were a little careless when protecting the ball which handed the ball to Bosworth on a few occasions. The visitors cause, however, was not helped by a yellow card for a number of indiscretions. Half time 14-0.
Market Bosworth maintained possession rugby for large parts of the second half and the home team had to upgrade 'The Big D Defence'. Brian Atwiine completing multiple tackles and George Lee assisting in thwarting many attacks. The collision between Jack Digby and the opposition prop probably had the phone ringing again at BGS headquarters.
Harborough gradually gained the upper hand and worked their way up the pitch. The impressive Purnell broke round the base of a breakdown to feed Joe Whitworth, whose supporting run was rewarded with a try near the posts. It would be unfair on Bosworth to say Harborough had it all their own way, but although they controlled much of the ball, breaking down Harbrough's 'absolutely superb' defence was proving extremely difficult. The introduction of Michael Woodford at half time led to better ball protection in midfield and with threequarters of the game gone, 'Woody' popped over for a customary try. Purnell converted.
A similar pattern emerged for the remainder of the game with Bosworth grinding out phase after phase, hardly ever spilling the ball. On the rare occasion Harborough gained possession, a break from deep in Harborough's half by Purnell set the hares and hounds running. Some great interplay and kick and chase saw Harry Durham dive on the ball to score Harborough's fifth try. The 34th and 35th point were sealed with the fifth conversion to complete a 100% kicking display by Josh Purnell. Just when it looked like the visitors looked like they might score, they were held up over the try line and the referees final whistle brought the game to a conclusion.
With Oadby Wyggs losing at home to Luton its getting congested at the top of the table. Harborough remain second just a point behind Wyggs, but have to visit both the Leicester based side and Luton over the next few weeks.
Head Coach Rich Bowden was pleased with the defence and commitment the lads put in but is aware they will need to bring their A-game to the party next weekend at Luton. He added' it would be great if we can get as much support as possible down to Luton next week, its only an hour down the M1 and it would mean a great deal to the lads.
The seconds lost 31-0 to high flying Stoneygate 1sts in tough contest and there was disappointment for the Colts in the National Colts Cup losing to Hinckley 29-17