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1st XV - Match centre

Nottingham Casuals
Southwell
Sat 2 Dec 14:15 - Midlands Division - Midlands 2 East (North) Full time

Nottingham Casuals 31 Southwell 27

Casuals come back from a 3 try deficit, to win a 10 try thriller, in a real ding-dong battle, overcoming a very resolute Southwell side who could not replicate their previous season’s dominant display.

Midlands 2 East North
2nd December 2017

Nottingham Casuals 31 Southwell 27

Southwell opened with determination and aided by some sloppy work at the lineout, got their first try on 5 minutes.

The second try 5 minutes later owed much to non-intervention, when they took advantage of a knock on in the middle of the move to score again.
Fortunately the goal kicking (which was the story most of the game) was way off target.

Casuals came back through a line break by Joe Barton, Higgins took it on, and James Wood almost got over the try line.
Southwell were penalised 5 metres out, but the kick for some reason, rather than going for the simple option, was
taken from the 22 and promptly missed.

Reprieve for the visitors which they turned to their advantage, turning over a maul they went deep into Casuals territory, and then simply drove their lineout over for the 3rd try.
Fortunately no conversion again.

Casuals then started to get themselves into the game.
On 20 minutes they put a kick into touch from a penalty, and the subsequent move gave Steve Naylor room to get through for a trade mark run to the try line.
Gareth Davies-Jones then put over the first place kick of the afternoon. 7 - 15

Just after the ½ hour Casuals were in control, and took a driving maul up to Southwell’s line.
Casuals then got a penalty for Southwell deliberately dropping the maul, (not a penalty try or yellow card as seen on televison in nearly every game), so the kick went into touch for a lineout, and the forwards did the rest simply shoving the ensuing maul over for the try, touch down awarded to Jack Weedon.
Unfortunately the conversion went astray.

So 12 – 15 at half time.
The start to the second half was totally Casuals, but the most promising move ended in a dreadful forward pass, but Casuals regrouped and eventually when they won possession once again through a scrum, Naylor bursting therough the Southwell tacklers to crash in for his second touchdown. This time the conversion went through the sticks, and Casuals were in the lead.

Sadly that was shortlived, as Southwell took advantage of what the Casuals’ spectators deemed to be a massive forward pass, no amount of shouting was going to convince the ref 30 metres back from play, he didn’t give it, and Southwell added 5 points to their tally, to get a 1 point lead.

The ref then took umbrage to the advice he was being offered, and marched Casuals back,.

The answer from Casuals was emphatic,and Southwell span to the ball down the backs, they failed to spot Davies-Jones coming hotfoot from defence, grabbing the ball, and streaking in from ½ way totally uninhibited by Southwell’s players as they stood stock still, amazed by their generosity.
Unfortunately he could not add the conversion from smack in front of the posts, as that pleasure instead fell to Higgins.

Casuals were very soon back on the defensive, as Southwell punted a penalty kick to touch.
Ironically their throw-in was lousy and Jack Weedon cleared up at the tail, and the ball was belted away down field.

Casuals, the good hosts they are, returned the earlier favour by Southwell, as they handed them a pass midfield, and Southwell ran the ball up to score a converted try (even though, once again the supporters attempted to convince the ref that there had been another forward pass in the move. Same as before, won’t give it from that far away)
So a one point lead to Southwell, and with 30 minutes gone, Casuals were had to work their way back into the game.

A kick to touch gave Casuals great field position, and when they took possession, Naylor burst through on the wing, and he gave the final pass to Higgins up in support, going in for the match winning try.

Southwell did not help themselves, as Higgins was flattened straight in front of the ref, and Davies-Jones belted the ball away from the penalty.
Casuals withstood any attempts by Southwell after that, even though they came close, the final word was Casuals’ as they ran out deserved winners, taking the try bonus point, on top of their winners 4 points, gaining 6th spot in the league, with Southwell precariously second from bottom.

Next week Ashbourne away, 2.15 kick off, and the following week, Bakewell away. The fixture has been switched at Bakewell’s request.
For those wanting to go to watch, the pitch is now at Lady Manners School , not at the showground any more. Check for Bakewell festivities.
Lady Manners School is on the hill above Bakewell, plenty of parking and directions on website.
Take Monyash road out of centre and turn left at crossroads 3/4 mile out from centre.

Team
1. Baraniak, Stephen (sub Alexiou)
2. Weedon Jack (try)
3. Hawkins, Alex
4. Barton ,Joe
5. Fox, Matthew
6. Harding, Barry
7. Brownlie, Christopher (sub Ackroyd)
8. Williams, Stuart
9. Davies-Jones, Gareth (Try and conversion)
10. Higgins, Mark (Try and conversions)
11. Cammarata, Emanuele (sub Brelsford)
12. Wood, James
13. O'Connor, Daniel
14. Naylor, Stephen (2 tries)
15. Hallam, Ben
Subs
Brelsford, Christopher
Alexiou, Antonios
Ackroyd, Jon

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League table

# Team Pl Pts
1. West Bridgford 10 41
2. Coalville 10 33
3. Matlock 10 31
4. Newark 9 31
5. Dronfield 9 27
6. Nottingham Casuals 9 25
7. Ashbourne 9 24

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