On a bleak miserable mid-winter’s day, The Greens were still without Oli Wood and Nick Syddall. Whilst missing from last week’s team are Colin Chapman, Jakob Hardy and Jay Johnson. The good news is that Eddie Newsum has started his comeback with a game in the stags.
Coach Tim Robinson was struck down by the flu bug and was also missing from the touchline as Scunthorpe started their final game of the year. The Staffordshire boys were a different outfit from the one encountered at their place earlier in the season with quite a few new faces in the line-up. Starting at a confident pace they were first to threaten and with the strong wind at their backs, kept the home boys inside their own half for most of the early exchanges. Strong mid-field drives created space out on the left wing for Sabba Srimanishvili to race in. Will Simpson was unable to convert but the visitors had taken a 5 points to nil lead after 17 minutes. Scunthorpe did make slow progress into the Burton half but all came to naught as the ball was lost in contact.
Conditions were very cold and mistakes accrued from both teams, as they tried to be ambitious. It was the visitors who again made another breakthrough as they entered the home half, when full back Simpson joined in the attack and stepped inside some poor home defence to touchdown under the posts. He added the extras with a quick drop-kick which meant that, although the game was now into added time in the first half, There was enough left for The Greens to come back and this they did. Gaining possession after the re-start and retained the ball through multiple phases, for Dave Garbutt drove over wide to the right. Paul Cook added the conversion with a good strike to take the home boys into the interval only 12 points to 7 Down.
The home boys were straight out of the blocks in the second half and pressured the Burton set piece by taking a ball against the head. More pressure followed with Benn Hyde attacking from the base of a scrum 35 metres out and bursting his way through to score under the posts, for a fine individualist try after only 5 minutes. Cook added the extras and Scunthorpe had now taken the lead by 14 points to twelve. With wind advantage, The Greens kept the game in the visitors ‘22’ and as the opportunities arrived, they were just as easily squandered with two attacking lines-out failing to bear fruit and in other situations very close to the visitors line, possession was lost. So, many chances went begging which allowed Burton to get out of jail and also allow them to threaten later in the game.
The final whistle brought blessed relief all round as Burton went home with a point, Scunthorpe were pleased to take a 4 point win and all spectators rushed to get out of the bitter cold.
Match Report by LWJClayton