8 - 7
Caparo Colts found faced Northampton side Towcester in the first round of the Colts National cup, a side with renown for being a feeder club to Northampton Saints.
On a windy and wet day at Heslam Park the young greens side took to the park for a revised 2pm kick off knowing that the opponents would be no push over.
The Greens starting line up was slightly changed from the side that defeated Malton And Norton in a league fixture the previous week, Welton being unavailable due to injury and Temperton through work due to the later start time.
Up stepped Drury into Hooker and Cook slipping into the 15 slot.
Although the conditions were far from ideal the greens wearing the 1st team second strip started the game with purpose and put the Tows under great pressure. Conditions and sloppy handling putting paid to several promising attacks.
Tows defended quite valiantly and continued to frustrate the greens attack be it sometimes illegally paying the price with various penalties, although near the line frequently for the first 20 minutes the greens were unable to find a finishing touch.
The first real scoring chance came after yet another penalty to the left of the uprights about 25m out. Up stepped Tomlinson but the kick drifted just wide of the right upright.
This only spurred the home side who continued to attack with Dibdin causing havoc in the 10 channel, forceful runs proving very hard to stop and with winger Thornton’s pace out wide, but still the final touch could not be found.
The first score came after Dibdin on one of his trademark runs handed off several players and carrying 2 players on his back stretched over the line to score out wide.
A well deserved try but Tomlinson was unlucky with the conversion attempt.
Towcester did have a few forays into green territory but resolute defending with Ingleton to the fore ferociously tackling all before him, this would later go on to earn him man of the match honours.
The half ended with the greens holding a narrow but deserved 5-0 lead.
Referee Murphy talked to both sides at the interval warning Tows about their persistent killing of the ball at the break down but this seemed to fall on deaf ears as 15mins in their flanker was yellow carded for that exact offence, but the greens were unable to capitalise on the numerical advantage. From a kick through after a promising greens attack had broken down the ball as it does in this sport played cruel tricks on the up to now solid defence, skidding and evading the grasp of the back line and having to be taken back over the try line and grounded in goal following a great chase by the Tows three quarters.
The Greens now under great pressure conceded a penalty for losing binding in the ensuing scrummage, Tows opted to take a penalty tap and although the first wave was repelled the second powered the maul over the line for a score. The extra’s proving a formality from close to the posts, Tows now leading 5 - 7
The next ten minutes were frantic with the greens pushing forward only for the attack to break down and Tows then trying to counter, whether it was fatigue or the slippery conditions no side seemed to put together any sustained passages of play.
With time running out the dream of a cup run all but over the greens made a final concerted effort and pressured the line only to be bundled into touch 10 metres out. Referee Murphy indicated this was the last passage of play, all Tows needed was the ball into touch, but in true bulldog fashion Richardson jumping at 2 did as he had most of the afternoon stole the opposition ball, from the ensuing maul the centre line of Tows advanced too early and were penalised, With the last kick of the game up stepped replacement kicker Lowden to coolly slotted over the penalty giving the greens a deserved victory.
Scunthorpe faces Kettering in the next round and with home advantage expectations are high...
An amusing fact was pointed out by the retired colts chairman Terry Jackson…That the last time these two teams met was in the 5th round of this competition in 2003 with the greens again victors by a single point ..And again winning with a penalty kick as the final action ….The score that day Colts 18 Towcester 17 …Tom Aldridge doing the honours.
Rep:- A Taylor