1st XV - Report
Warwickian finish with comfortable win against the champions
Warwickian comprehensively outplayed the midlands 5sw champions Coventrians on Saturday to confirm 2nd place and complete a fantastic 2011/12 season.
For Warwickian beating the champions and ensuring they kept their 100% home record intact was more than enough motivation for them and their electric first 20 mins settled the nerves and effectively ended this fixture as a competitive contest.
The match started off with Warwickian kicking off against the wind and after a tense first 5 where both teams were looking to dominate proceedings. The home team settled into their game plan the quickest and was soon on the score board after 10 mins when several excellent phases of play saw a lovely pass from fly half Jamie Bearman end up in John Carters hands. His scything run saw him touch down for a well-deserved try. Steve Twissell missed the conversion however it wasn’t long before he was on the score board with a penalty after Coventrians infringed 30 meters out.
Warwickian were now in total control and if not for some heroic defending by Coventrians could have been 2 tries up. It wasn’t long before they were when the ever alert Will Godwin picked up from the back of a ruck on the visitors 22 and some great footwork saw him glide past the covering defense and dot down under the posts. Twissell this time converted.
To Coventrians credit they rallied round and started to play the type of rugby that had saw them demolish every other team this season on their way to the championship using their big forwards and elusive full back to bring themselves back into the match. Warwickian had known this was coming and defended solidly so when Coventrians did open their account for the day with a penalty and then an unconverted try 5 mins later they were made to work very hard for the points. The whistle came to end the half not long afterwards and Warwickian lead by 15 points to 8.
The period just before half time was the last time Coventrians looked dangerous throughout the game as Warwickian started the second half with the wind in the same vein as the first.
Warwickian made some changes for the 2nd half with coach Nick Cameron and 2nd row Tony Ellard coming on for their final games before hanging up their boots. Cameron was straight into the action using his left boot to good effect by pinning Coventrians back in their own half. He was also trying very hard to bring Jamie Bearman into the game and that combination brought about Bearman’s first try of the afternoon when Warwickians pressure finally told and he went through the defense to score. Twissell converted and then added another penalty after the visitors resorted to slowing the ball down to take the score to 25-8 and end the contest.
Warwickian knew the game was in the bag but instead of going for the jugular took their foot of the gas. This allowed Coventrians to get a bit of a foothold and again get another 5 pointer against the run of play.
The final part of the game was all about Warwickian looking to get the 4th try and Coventrians throwing everything into their tackles to try and stop this. However the inevitable happened and after several minutes of pressure the ball landed in Nick Cameron’s hands he looked up to see Warwickians had a 6 man overlap. Only one of them was needed as he took the ball to the last defender and passed out to Jamie Bearman who went over under the posts for a converted try. Twissells conversion saw his tally for the match become 12pts and with it top the points scoring charts - an impressive feat for a loose-head prop. Bearman’s try saw him finish the season on 14 for the season 1 behind Will Godwin who finished his first season for the club with 15.
The whistle to end the match soon followed and Warwickian had comprehensively beaten the champions 32-13
Coach Nick Cameron said “This win caps of a fantastic season for us and I only wish this game had been for the title because it’s no more than the lads deserve. We’ll now wait and see how the leagues are sorted and if 2nd place is enough to get us promoted. This is unfortunately my last competitive game as head coach as I’m leaving at the end of the season to take 12 months away from the game. I’d like to take this opportunity to thank Shaun (the chairman) for giving me the opportunity to work with Warwickian and everyone else for making me feel so welcome”.
Warwickian do have a couple of none competitive games left including the Bam Bam memorial match vs. Wellesbourne and then finish the season on the 12th of May with their end of season presentation ceremony at the club.