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1st XV - Match centre

Worcester Wanderers
Lichfield
Sat 9 Apr 15:00 - Midland Division - Midlands 1 West Full time

Bonus Point Win In Final Home Game

The Wanderers recorded a fine bonus point win by 24 points to 14 against highly rated Lichfield RFC in their last home match in Midlands 1 West.

The Wanderers recorded a fine bonus point win by 24 points to 14 against highly rated Lichfield RFC in their last home match in Midlands 1 West.

Playing into the strong breeze the Wanderers took the game to Lichfield, denying time and space to their talented three quarters. The Wanderers forwards put a blanket over the opposition, the tackle area was very physical but, the smaller Wanderers forwards were quicker to the breakdown and frustrated their opponents. David Merlin, Richard Ralph and Gareth Owens carried hard into the Lichfield forwards constantly getting over the gain line.

Wanderers half backs Dan Sparrey and Jim Price hustled and harried their opposite numbers forcing errors and not allowing Lichfield anytime on the ball. Despite territorial and possession advantage the Lichfield defence was solid, the Wanderers created several half chances but failed to take them whilst Lichfield always remained a threat with the ball in hand. Both sets of players were displaying tremendous commitment; finally, the Wanderers breached the Lichfield defence with tries from Ralph and Tim Ohlson, Greg Fincher narrowly missing both conversions.

WanderersvLichfield2011
19 photos

With time running out in the first half, Lichfield launched an attack, a training park move was well executed by the backs leading to a converted try.

Half Time: Wanderers 10 Lichfield 7

The Wanderers with the breeze at their backs dominated the opening exchanges, Price expertly keeping Lichfield penned inside their 22 with intelligent kicking, Ally McLaughlin and Fincher started to make headway in midfield, setting up good possession, Lichfield defended well but, couldn't break out of their 22. The Wanderers had several surges for the line with Merlin, Russ Marsland and Ohlson to the fore. Tom Richmond was having a towering game in the line out 'nicking' throws against the head to keep the pressure on Lichfield. Finally, Sparrey darted over in the corner and Price stepped up to convert from the touchline to move the Wanderers 10 points clear.

Lichfield were a constant threat but, they couldn't gain enough quality possession or territory as the Wanderers retained the ball well, frustrating Lichfield's' attempts to attack!

The pressure told when following several charges to the Lichfield try line, Merlin, crashed over for the try, duly converted by Price, which secured the bonus point and capped Merlin's' fine all round performance!

Lichfield were not done and their efforts were rewarded when a quickly taken penalty on the Wanderers 22 led to a foot race won comfortably by the Lichfield centre for a converted try to leave the final score; Wanderers 24 Lichfield 14.

Stuart James
DoR

Photograph: Tim Ohlson, ably assisted by Dave Merlin, crashing over for his try!

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WanderersvLichfield2011
19 photos
WanderersvLichfield2011

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League table

# Team Pl Pts
7. Walsall 26 66
8. Whitchurch 26 57
9. Worcester Wanderers 26 55
10. Stratford Upon Avon 26 55
11. Nuneaton Old Edwardians 26 53
12. Old Laurentians 26 52
13. Banbury 26 20

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