2nd XV - Report
|Alcester 2nd XV||7||vs||55||Willenhall Rugby Club|
Third consecutive win for 2nds v Alcester 2nd XV
Willenhall 2nd XV travelled into the heart of Warwickshire and scored 9 tries in beating Alcester 2nds by 55 points to 7. Winger Junior led from the front with a hat trick of tries.
Willenhall kicked off and a scrum on half way was the result of the kick not travelling 10m but the forwards with Paul Husband, Josh Brown, and Josh Clewley in the front row put in a strong drive and their opposition buckled. Alcester still managed to scramble the ball away and good tackles by Luke Jelfs and Ant Helm stopped play on the gain line. Willenhall’s first attack resulted in a try for Junior – Mick Fergus took a great line on half way and the forwards drove. Luke Jelfs broke blind from the maul supported by brother Matt (9) and they took play into Alcester’s 22. Clewley and Allan Moore hit up close to the ruck sucking the home defence in and fly half Troman used his backs to move play wide for winger Junior to open the scoring at 5-0. Within 3 minutes, the visitors were over again. Matt Jelfs (who this week switched from 7 to scrum half) stole the ball from his opposite number at a scrum and right wing Tom Reynolds supported to get behind his winger. Fergus, Brown and Husband produced great ruck ball and centre Alan Dyke straightened his running line and took a short ball from Troman to burst through two tackles and charge 40m to the posts. Troman converted to extend the lead to 12-0. Alcester had a spell of possession and penalties allowed them to advance into the Willenhall half but Husband, Grocutt and Todd Melvin locked the ball up to turn it over. Helm picked up a loose pass and sliced into the heart of the home midfield. Troman gave a long miss pass to full back Andy Jones who fed Reynolds on the outside. The young winger again skinned his opponent and was finally put down in the Alcester 22. The forwards again gave good ruck ball and this time it was the turn of number 8 Grocutt to take a pass from Troman to plough his way under the posts. The Captain again added the 2 extra points to lead 19-0. Willenhall were proving too strong for their opponents and they continued to play exciting but structured rugby as Fergus took the restart on the full. The veteran fed Josh Brown on the burst and then received the return pop from the young hooker. He crashed through tackles into the 22 and unselfishly offloaded to Dyke but the centre put his low pass down with the line at his mercy. However the next score was not long in coming as Jones joined the backline and changed his running line to burst through under the posts – Troman made it 26-0 after 25 minutes. Another spell of pressure in Willenhall’s 22 required strong tackles from Moore, Husband, and Reynolds but as they turned over possession Reynolds gave them a lesson in finishing with a great individual try from 60m out. The young winger set off from the right with a dazzling run as he looked for weaknesses in the Alcester defence. Arcing and straightening he crabbed across the field until even his own players lost him, ending by rounding the home team’s right wing and full back to score wide on the left. 31-0 and half time – the team settled for a well earned drink on a hot afternoon.
There was a firm commitment to maintain playing patterns and not try to play “Barbarian rugby” from the start of the second half and Junior took a deep restart. He stepped his man and Jones supported to break out of his 22. The forwards worked hard to get back in support and took play through 6 phases to drive over halfway. Grocutt found himself in the centre and chipped over the on rushing Alcester backs and Tom Bird put in a good kick chase to trap their full back in possession. This was a very good build up but a dropped pass from a set move in midfield spoilt the opportunity. Willenhall’s forwards were now bossing the scrums and pushed their opponents off the ball – Grocutt picked and drove and the forwards supported. The backs moved the ball left and Jones and Helm combined to send Junior scorching over in the corner for his second. Troman converted to make the score 38-0. The next score was a beauty, involving the whole team through phase after phase with for wards and backs combining unselfishly. Todd Melvin caught a long restart and carried the ball back to the 22. Forwards and backs worked through the phases to carry play into the home half. Jones hit the line short to keep the defence back pedalling and Helm and Dyke showed quality hands to send Junior in for his third. (The left winger was nearly fined for “jug avoidance” as he dived over the 5m line but recovered as his team mates screamed at him and crawled over the try line). 43-0. Junior was proving too fast and strong for Alcester and as the backs threw the ball wide again he raced clear from 30m out and gave Ant Helm an unopposed run in under the posts. The ex-footballer then managed to miss his own conversion from in front of the sticks – no wonder he switched codes. With players going down like nine pins Dyke switched sides to even the numbers up and scrums went unopposed. The centre then stepped through a gap to cross from 30m to open the scoring for Alcester!!! 48-7. This fired the home side up and they almost scored again as the fly half used Dyke as a dummy runner and threw a long pass out to their left wing. He sprinted clear 50m out but a great cover tackle by Junior put him into touch 5m out. Willenhall were soon back to business however with direct running from forwards Brown, Moore, Fergus and Grocutt and centres Jones and Helm cutting good lines. Paul Husband’s final score was fully deserved and a testament to his work rate in both attack and defence (not to mention his constant assistance to the referee in getting decisions correct). Brown, Melvin and Clewley carried the ball ever nearer the Alcester line and Hubby spotted a gap and burst through it to score. Troman converted to take the score out to 55-7 and the young referee decided that 30 minutes was long enough and finished the game early.
Well done boys – Aston Old Edwardians at home next week. A much stiffer task but lets keep it going ready for Newcastle (A) and Longton (H) in the League on 20th and 27th October.