WALSALL 1st XV vs STAFFORD 1st XV. 28TH JANUARY 2017. LEAGUE MATCH.
It’s a grey, wet, boggy afternoon at Delves Road as Walsall grind out a tiring victory.
Walsall 27 – 0 Stafford
Stafford travelled to an overcast Walsall for their final January league game of 2017. The Delves Road XV were looking to avenge the loss that they suffered at the County Ground earlier in the season and continue their strong run in the league, pushing for the promotion places.
The rain sheeted across the pitch during for the opening period of the game making difficult playing conditions for the teams. Walsall started the game strongly finding success through their heavy set of forwards who laid siege to the visitor’s line. Stafford defended fiercely matching the opposition attack, but Walsall broke the deadlock through a penalty to put the first point of the game on the board. Stafford continued to contest every ball and looked dangerous when they managed to fight their way into attack. The home side added to their lead with an unconverted try and a yellow card further disrupted the County Town XV temporarily reducing them to fourteen for a ten-minute period. Walsall continued to have the better of the game and finished the half with a converted try. Stafford went into half time trailing by 15 – 0 but still fighting in a difficult game.
Stafford started the second half strongly and put the opposition under immediate pressure, but couldn’t quite find their way across the line for the points. Walsall clicked smoothly back into attack and started to pile the pressure back on a tiring Stafford XV. The conditions and physicality of the game started to take its toll as knocks to matty walklate, James Wilson and Neil Green called in all available reinforcements from the Stafford bench. Two further tries for Walsall secured the hosts the bonus point and closed down what had been a difficult game played in testing conditions for both sides.