Old Yards 12 - 5 Harbury Match Report

Old Yards 12 - 5 Harbury Match Report

By Tom Kittendorf
15 January 2020
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Harbury dig deep for losing bonus point away to Old Yards.


A very hard won bonus point for Harbury who battled against adversity after being reduced to fourteen players on the 30th minute following a controversial red card. At that stage OYs were 12 points ahead. Despite the numerical advantage the hosts failed to improve their score in the remaining fifty minutes of play. Harbury may have been on the back foot but their defence was quite superb. In the second half they began to put pressure on OYs who began to leak penalties as their frustrations appeared to grow. Good field position enabled the visitors to stretch the home cover to the full. Finally following a telling series of driving mauls Harbury drove over for an unconverted try.

The final quarter was a see saw affair, as field positions changed through a number of conceded penalties by either side. As a consequence much of the play was between the respective 22's. Harbury were unlucky on a couple of occasions when they were driven off the field following some telling forays down the blindside.

OYs obviously concerned that they were failing to take advantage of not only their numerical advantage but of their larger forwards and sharp backs were unable to penetrate the excellent defence of their visitors. However, in the final five minutes they were able to move play deep into the home 22. They won three consecutive line outs but were once more thwarted by fine defence across the whole of the Harbury team. Into the 77th minute they won another penalty and moved to within 5 metres of the line.

From an attacking scrum it seemed inevitable that OYs would score. Solid defence prevented the initial drive. A reset scrum with the clock on red had to be uncompetitive as Harbury had had a prop and replacement yellow carded. Even playing three players short Harbury not only held up the resulting maul but won a crucial penalty. The ball was kicked out and no side called by the referee.

An outstanding performance of resistance against the odds by a hugely committed Harbury team, that not only scored the only try of the match, after they were reduced to fourteen players on 30 minutes, but also prevented OYs from denying them a thoroughly deserved bonus point with a superb effort in the final minutes when they were down to 12 players.

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