1st XV - Report
Wallingford 25 Milton Keynes 36
This was a remarkable victory for Milton Keynes. The day didn’t start off well when then veteran 2nd row Michael Lambert dislocated his ankle
City’s mind wasn’t on the game for the first 10 minutes. Wallingford were showing some lively moves and caught City out on two occasions. From a quick line out Wallingford caught City napping and quickly scored a try. A similar incident occurred with a quick penalty with Milton Keynes still walking back preparing for a kick. Before the away side new it they were 10 points down. City didn’t learn their lesson and Wallingford again took a quick penalty and within 15 minutes the away side were 17 – 0 down.
City seemed to have learnt from Wallingford’s exploits and after 20 minutes took a quick penalty themselves. Stuart Webb took the ball on and passed to Captain Richard Hill. He still had work to do and from 15 metres out was able to force his way over the try line giving City a glimmer of hope despite the conversion being missed.The glimmer of hope was soon dashed when within a few minutes Stuart Tomkinson was shown the red card for an alleged stamp. An away win now looked most unlikely.
The City pack were up for the challenge. Despite being a man down they were able to at least hold their own, and at times dominated the forward play.
Wallingford scored a further try, as did City before the half time whistle came. The City score was as a result of Dan Rolfe picking up the ball having been kicked on by the City captain, Richard Hill. City were losing 25 – 10 at this time and some stern words were required during the half time talk!
Little did Wallingford know that they wouldn’t score any points in the second half!
City were assisted in the second half by the wind being behind them and the City pack became more dominant. Their excellent mauling meant that they were now more in control of the game. The combination of Richard Hill and Dan Rolfe worked again with Rolfe scoring under the posts. This meant that City were very much in the hunt with Phil Powell converting to put Milton Keynes just 8 points behind Wallingford.
A further 7 points were awarded when the referee gave the away side a penalty try following some sustained pressure close to the Wallingford try line. City were now just one point behind with 20 minutes to go!
Kieran McConnell got his name on the score sheet in the corner following a pass from Dan Walker. From the following restart City took the ball on up front and made 30 metres with an excellent maul. The referee penalised Wallingford for bring down the maul and the resulting line out was won by City who drove the ball over the line to complete an excellent afternoons work and a remarkable win by 25 – 36.
Milton Keynes play Grove at home next Saturday. This is a crucial match and both teams will need to win to keep their promotion hopes alive.
The Club is now preparing for next season and is looking to recruit new players over the summer. Any players, whatever the standard are welcome to make contact with the club on 507370. With four sides there will be a place for players of all standards.