OL's vs Pinley
Old Leamingtonians Rugby Football Club Senior Mens' Match Report Saturday 8th September 2018
League: Midlands 3 West (South)
Old Leamingtonians RFC 1st XV v Pinley RFC 1st XV
Venue The Crofts, Bericote road
Result Old Leamingtonians RFC 1st XV 14 - 19 Pinley RFC 1st XV
Following on from their 5 point win away to Old Yardleians last weekend, OLs fancied their chances in their second league match of the season at home to Pinley.
However the visitors had other ideas and in a tightly contested affair witnessed by a large and vocal crowd the home side found it hard to penetrate Pinley’s defence.
Old Leamingtonians started the game positively and played some neat rugby with forwards and backs combining well. Wing Forward, Felix Heath, bravely ignoring a groin injury, and well supported by Hugh Melhuish led some encouraging forays from the base of the scrum but despite some good approach play some careless handling meant that the OLs were unable to threaten the Pinley line.
When Pinley did get into the OLs 22 they made it pay and scored 2 well executed tries, converting one. Half time arrived with no further score and with Pinley in lead by 12 points to nil.
OLs came out positively in the second half but on a rare visit to the OLs territory Pinley scored a further try through their forwards. This try was again converted putting Pinley 19 points ahead.
At no point did OLs allow their heads to drop and in the last 20 minutes their fitness was evident as they came storming back with returnee (from Stratford) Liam Jones firing up the forwards. The ball was now being transferred to the backs and the passes were sticking. Full Back Ciaran O’Connor outstripped his opposite number to score the first home try which was ably converted by Stand-off Henry Reynolds, making the score 7 – 19.
OLs were now in the ascendancy and another “length of the field” move ended with Ciaran O’Connor notching his second try. Reynolds again converted from way out near the touchline making it 14 -19.
The game was now all OLs and concerted pressure just short of the posts was thwarted when the referee adjudged that they had committed a penalty infringement. Pinley cleared their line and grimly held on for the last 5 minutes to claim a four league point victory. OLs had to be satisfied with a single bonus point having put up a reasonable performance against tough opposition. They should go into next week’s away game at Shipston with confidence.
Report provided by Lester Hunt
OLRFC Press & Publicity Officer