Sat 13
1st XV
Old Northamptonians
M Smith (2), J Barron (2), D Garbutt, S Johnson
S Johnson
S Johnson (5)
Another Solid 5 points

Another Solid 5 points

By Peter Bright
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Strong team performance ensures a well deserved victory for the Greens 48pts. against a plucky Old Northamptonians XV 5 pts.

The Greens promotion drive was further improved as a result of a workmanlike performance against an opposition whose game plan was to disrupt the flow of the game at every opportunity. This however proved to be fruitless against a confident and ambitious Greens outfit who ran out comfortable 48-5 victors.

The Greens welcomed back hooker Gareth Mist with Mike Smith taking the wing position and rejoiced in the opportunity to play on a sound surface and in fair weather.

The early exchanges were even with the visitors taking the game to the Greens without really causing them any undue problems.

On 10 minutes following good footballing skills from centre Sam Morgan the ball was in turn transferred to winger Mike Smith who finished well to give the Greens a 5-0 lead.

Early on Jack Leaning had to leave the field with an injury but Nick Sydall proved to be a more than able deputy.

The Greens forwards were in control and dominant and following a scrum infringement Steve Johnson kicked a penalty to take the score to 8-0.

On 15 mins following concerted pressure a hallmark line-out catch and drive resulted in a try for Jake Barron. Steve Johnson delivered an excellent conversion to take the score to 15-0.

The opposition, in the face of continued pressure from the Greens, gave away a number of penalties resulting in two yellow cards in quick succession the second of which led to the Greens being awarded a scrum some 15 metres from the visitors goal line. Scrum dominance was again to the fore and Dave Garbutt picked up the ball at No.8 and drove over the line for a try to give a half time score of 20-0.

The pattern of the second half followed that of the first with the Greens dominant at the set piece and generally more cohesive in the three-quarters, whilst the opposition offered honest endeavour and commitment, without posing any real threat.

5 mins into the second half Ash Dibden was harshly awarded a yellow card for a supposed technical offence but this did not hinder the Greens intent.

Following an attacking line-out Jake Barron was again on hand to touch down for a try. Steve Johnson added the extras to take the score to 27-0.

The visitors did get on the scoresheet early in the second half following a penalty award resulting in a try scored by No.5 Tim Cardall to take the score to 27-5.

Any thoughts however of an opposition comeback were short lived as the Greens continued to pressurise the opposition into conceding penalties.

Following such an award the resultant scrum was driven some 20 metres toward the opposition line. Illegal play meant the award of a penalty try converted by Steve Johnson to take the score to 34-5.

Both Keiran Bournes and Rory Randall-Tyrell were introduced into the fray and soon made their presence felt.

The Greens continued with their attacking intent and following some enterprising interplay between forwards and three-quarters winger Mike Smith was rewarded with his second try converted by Steve Johnson to take the score to 41-5.

The last play of the match saw Steve Johnson go on a mazy run beating would be defenders and cleverly using winger Colin Chapman as a foil to score the last try of the game and then add the extras to give a very satisfying final score of 48pts to 5.

With leaders Hinckley again dropping points the Greens win narrowed the gap at the top of the table to just 3 points with 7 games to play.

The Greens remain focussed on the task ahead and must learn to overcome their frustration at opposition tactics and continue to play in the manner that has proved successful in the league to-date.

Another good performance with the forwards again dominating their opponents with Jake Barron excelling throughout, thus allowing the three-quarters to play expansive rugby, which they continue to do at every opportunity.

Next stop Peterborough Lions who will no doubt provide a stern test and look to dent the Greens' ambitions!

Match Report by DACChapman RFU DFC & Bar None

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Match details

Match date

Sat 13, Feb 2016




National League 3 Midlands