Old Leamingtonians Rugby Football Club
Senior Men's Match Report Saturday 14th April 2018
League: Midlands 3 West (South)
Fixture: Manor Park RFC 1st XV v Old Leamingtonians RFC 1st XV
Venue: Griff & Coton, Nuneaton
Result: Manor Park RFC 1st XV 15 - 47 Old Leamingtonians RFC 1st XV
A blistering display of 15 man open play rugby, coupled to a strong defence, gave OLs a decisive seven try victory.
The first 15 minutes of the game saw OLs dominating the territory and keeping Manor Park firmly rooted in their own half of the field. On the quarter hour mark strong forward pressure by OLs resulted in Hooker and Captain, Reece Jones forcing his way over for the opening score. The try was converted by Fly Half, Henry Reynolds. Manor Park came back strongly with a game plan of forward dominating rugby. OLs were put under strong pressure and on the 22 minute mark the home side drove the visitors back over the goal line to touch down and reduce the deficit. The try went unconverted but from the kick off the ball was sent straight into touch to give the home side the advantage of a scrum on the half way line. The Manor Park forwards again took the game to OLs and it was only strong defensive play that prevented further tries. However from a penalty conceded in front of the posts Manor Park took the lead.
OLs came back into the game and their faster three-quarters began to make ground well into the home side half of the field. Manor Park’s defence was penalised and from a kick into touch and a won line out ball OLs forwards moved the game in field where Flanker, Felix Heath, broke from the pack to force his way over for try number two. This was also converted by Henry Reynolds. The remainder of the first half was all OLs with the backs dominant and it was only handling errors that prevented more tries until just on half time a sweeping move from left field to right ended with Winger, Liam Wellings forcing his way over for try number three. This was also converted to give OLs a half time lead of 21 points to 8.
After the break OLs were playing up the slope and the half was only a few minutes old when another sweeping move saw Full Back, Ciaran O’Connor, come into line and cut through the Manor Park defence for try number four. The conversion followed. Manor Park came back into game using the heavier forwards to try to dominate the game but the lighter OLs pack held firm. With Manor Park slowly gaining ground into the OLs half a loose pass was intercepted by OL Centre, Simon Hemming who ran the length of the pitch to touch down under the posts. The conversion followed.
From the kick off Manor Park established good territorial advantage and from a series of rucks and mauls gained penalty decisions well inside the OLs 22 metre area and despite a spirited defence the home side managed to force the ball over for a second try that was converted making the score 15 – 35.
With the game going into the last ten minutes OLs forwards began to take control over the home pack in both set and open play and from quick ball won the OLs backs were running Manor Park ragged. It was only desperate defence that prevented further tries.
That said a sweeping cross field move by OLs ended with scrum half Toby Lord supporting the three-quarters to take the final pass from winger Liam Wellings and cross for try number 6. The conversion attempt was missed. OLs continued to dominate and the final OLs try went to left Wing, Ryan Dee, who completed another sweeping three-quarters move by overlapping on the right wing to score try number 7. The conversion followed, (6 out of 7 for Henry Reynolds) and OLs finished the game with a 47 points to 15 win to keep them in second place in the league.
Next Saturday sees OLs entertain Old Coventrians in what could be a promotion decider – kick off 3.00 p.m.
Report provide by Den Fisher
Updated 08:27 - 20 Apr 2018 by Chris McCarthy
OLRFC Press & Publicity Officer