Ledbury RFC 1st XV 21 - 15 Old Leamingtonians RFC 1st XV
OLs Don’t Travel Well
Old Leamingtonians Rugby Football Club
Senior Men's Match Report Saturday 9th December 2017
League: Midlands 3 West (South)
Fixture: Ledbury RFC 1st XV v Old Leamingtonians RFC 1st XV
Result: Ledbury RFC 1st XV 21 - 15 Old Leamingtonians RFC 1st XV
OLs Don’t Travel Well
Old Leamingtonians had to settle for a losing bonus point from a game that saw them squander numerous scoring chances through poor ball handling and tactical advantage far too often wasted.
From the start of the game when OLs kicked off, the match official penalised them for having a man in front of the ball and from the ensuing scrum on the half way line Ledbury quickly fed the ball out to the right wing for a home player to run almost unchallenged to score under the posts. With less than a minute on the clock OLs found themselves seven points down.
OLs playing down a slight slope then took charge of the game and the Ledbury defence was put under constant pressure, hardly being able to venture out of their own half of the field, but too frequently space and opportunity created by good forward pressure was wasted with poor passing and dropped ball.
Eventually, the forward pressure paid off when following good mauling, the ball was forced to the Ledbury goal line for Scrum Half Toby Lord to pick up and touch down. The conversion was missed. The game continued in the same mould and OLs appeared to have scored a further try when an inch perfect cross kick from Centre David Canning to Winger Liam Wellings was well taken. Wellings crossed the goal line only for the match official to determine to every-one’s surprise that he had been fractionally in front of the kicker when the ball was played.
From the penalty Ledbury kicked into the OLs half and from a resulting maul the home side were awarded a penalty that was converted. OLs then continued to take the game to Ledbury but again created their own problems with poor handling and passing, allowing Ledbury to relieve the pressure time and time again.
Almost on half time with OLs still in command of the game a long kick into space from OLs was collected by a Ledbury player who was allowed to outrun the attacking OL forwards to score the second Ledbury try. This was unconverted but gave Ledbury a half time lead of 15 points to 5 having spent 80% of the first half inside their own half of the field.
The second half followed the same pattern as the first with OLs doing most of the attacking but indiscipline and poor handling again cost them dear. Ledbury converted two penalties to move 16 points clear before OLs began to play a more forward dominated game that created difficulties for Ledbury.
So often good possession won inside the Ledbury 22 metre area was followed by penalty decisions given against the visitors but the OLs pressure did pay off eventually with two forward driven tries, both touched down by captain and front row forward Reece Jones. Neither was converted but it pulled OLs back into a “one goal to win” situation. However, despite repeated pressure on the Ledbury defence no further score was made and OLs had to settle for a losing bonus point from a game that could have been won out of sight had some of the numerous scoring opportunities been converted into points. Final score was 21 -15 to Ledbury which saw OLs slip to 5th place in the League table.
Next week sees Manor Park RFC visit The Crofts with a 2.15pm kick off.
Report provided by Den Fisher,
Photo by Nick Crighton OL forwards camped on Ledbury line
OLRFC Press & Publicity Officer