Old Cents were made to work hard for their latest victory and earn local bragging rights against near neighbours Matson.
This was not a vintage performance from Old Cents,but they did just enough to secure a narrow victory at Redwell road and any victory at Matson is hard fought for.
Old Cents did not help their cause by too many chances going begging in the first half.On more than one occasion tries went begging because the wrong options were taken and this helped the Matson defence to regroup and defend their line on numerous times.Also the Old Cents forwards spent a lot of time out in the three's instead of doing the hard graft in the rucks and mauls allowing Matson to steal a large amount of ball from the away side.
Old Cents started strongly and took the lead early in the match when Liam Hemming slotted over a penalty.However the lead was short lived when Matson levelled soon after with a penalty off their own.With Old Cents putting the Matson scrum under an enormous amount of pressure,the away side started to create chances which were not taken and against the run of play Matson took the lead just before half time with a converted try.
Cents had tried to run the ball from their own line,the ball was spilled and from a Matson scrumage near the away sides line,the home side forced their way over for a try near the posts.
Score at half time was 3-10 to Matson and Cents had only themselves to blame because if they had taken their chances they might have been out of site.Old Cents scrum was on top and their lineout was winning their fair share of ball.In the loose Cents cause was not helped by players not committing themslves at the breakdown.
Old Cents with the slope and the wind at their backs dominated the second half but were again thwarted by wrong decision making and solid defence by the home side.However Cents kept up the pressure on Matson and midway through the second Half the away side drew level when Michael Mathers scored a try when Cents destroyed a Matson scrum on the home sides 22 metre line.The ball was fed to Michael Mathers and the centre raced through the home defence to score near the posts.Liam Hemming converted and Cents were level,no more than they deserved and the score stayed this way until the last couple of minutes when Cents sealed the match when Liam Hemming converted a simple penalty from in front of the posts 30 metres out.
Although Cents won they still have to click as a team and this will come shortly and heaven help the team on the receiving end.Capt Pete Willetts was named Old Cents man of the match for leading by example,although the back row of messr's Willetts,Harper and Huxtable played well as a unit.PropJames Elliott played well in the tight and had several bullocking runs at the Matson defence.Also Ryan Townsend had a solid game especially in defence where he tackled well.