Southam 13 - 25 Droitwich
Southam much improved against the league leaders
After last weeks result, this game against the lead leaders looked likely to be a tough day, but this was a much improved performance for Southam's young and much changed team and it was more a case bedding new players into the system than any defensive frailty across the team.
On a wet, but still day at Kineton Rd, Southam got on the board first after 2 minutes, with a 40m penalty from captain Will Grindal for offside in the backs, Droitwich hit back 3 minutes later as the as they kicked for touch from a penalty, up to the Southam 5m, they drove and were held up and from the resulting scrum, they broke blind, Southam got the coverage wrong and left a big gap for the Droitwich try. 8 minutes Droitwich hacked through and the ball bobbled badly for fullback Will Clarke and he had to touch down. From the scrum Droitwich again went blind and again the coverage did not click and a wide out try resulted. Southam settled down and held Droitwich across the field and their scrum settled when prop Matt Catterall came on. Southam attacked across the field, but could find little penetration and their kicking game s achieved little, neither finding touch or space. On 35 minutes, Droitwich put together some phases and with repeated drives from the Southam 10m got up to the try line and got in for the try from the base of the ruck. As the half closed, Southam got a penalty for not rolling away and fly half Harry Hewson kicked Southam upto Droitwich 5m. Southam went through a tidy catch and drive for prop Charlie Gilkes to get down for the try.
HT 8 - 15
3 minutes into the second half, a kick to nowhere allowed Droitwich to run back into the Southam 22 and after multiple phases, they drove up to the Southam line, drew players in and then spread it open across the pitch, Southam were imbalanced and had no one left to cover the try. After 23 minutes Droitwich got their next score and again it was mistakes that forced the try. A high kick was not handled and from a penalty for not releasing, Droitwich kicked for a 5m lineout, Southam did well to steal the ball and drive forward and get a scrum. The scrum was not handled well and from the next 5m scrum Droitwich again went blind and got the try. As the game ended Southam got some fire and with quick ball, forced repeated penalties and drove up to the line for a try for newcomer, wing forward Rob Shepherd.
This was a solid performance for Southam against the league leaders and if they just get a little more clinical in defence and positional kicking, Southam are sure to get back to winning ways.
MOTM Rob Shepherd
Next League Match:- Sat Feb 17th away v Nuneaton Old Eds