Nottinghamshire RFU Vase final.
11th May 2008
Meden Vale II 9 Worksop II 3.
In weather more suited to cricket, this really wasn't a match fit to grace a final. Both sides were fairly even up front with Vale's edge in the scrums negated by Worksop's dominance in the lineouts. The loose play was fairly even but whenever Worksop got any sort of momentum going they messed up their possession by continually going accidentally offside. Unfortunately, Vale, took play through the phases but never managed to pass the ball out to the backs, preferring to take it into contact just once too many times, thereby slowing or even losing possession. When Vale's backs did get the ball it was slow and Worksop's defence were waiting. If Vale could've got more quick ball then, they would probably had too much pace for their opposite numbers but alas they had very little to work with.
Vale took the lead with a Gavin Edwards penalty, when Worksop killed the ball in front of the posts. The lead was held for approximately 10 minutes before Vale repaid the penalty with a practically identical offence in front of their posts.
The half time score was 3-3 and both sides were struggling to cope with the hot conditions. The second half followed much the same pattern as the first. When Worksop gave away a penalty just outside their 10m line, there seemed little danger. When Edwards indicated he would like to take a shot at goal, not many on the sidelines or even the pitch gave him much of a chance. But the crowd was silenced when although missing by inches on the left, he got the distance comfortably. Worksop didn't heed the warning and with a penalty slightly further out at 45m, Edwards again opted for the kick at goal and this time his eye was in and the ball sailed through the posts. 6-3 to Vale. Worksop infringed on halfway and when Edwards indicated another kick at goal there were few doubted the outcome, again the ball sailed through the uprights with plenty to spare.
Worksop had a sustained period of attack in the last 10 minutes but Vale's defence was resolute and they never looked like conceding. An excellent victory brought about by good teamwork and the excellent boot of Gavin Edwards.
A special word of mention to skipper Gabriel Kamenou for nurturing the second team, through some difficult times in their first full season and to John Crossland who keeps managing to find players to keep Vale's sides in action. Here's to continued success and a platform to build on for next season.