Sheffield 2's 34 - 26 Sheffield Tigers 2's
By Roger Keegan
Sheffield battle back after Tigers take an early and dynamic lead.
Sheffield RUFC 2’s 34 - 26 Sheffield Tigers RUFC 2’s
Sheffield made less than an impressive start. A series of handling errors gave Tigers all the possession they could possibly desire, and some ineffectual tackling very soon led to a try to Tigers on the left just a few minutes into the match, which was easily converted to give the visitors a 7 point to nil lead. It was not long before Sheffield’s inability to put together any length of possession and Tigers were once more able, through a very lively back division, to add a second try, also out on the left. The conversion hit the right-hand upright and dropped down in front of the crossbar, but Tigers had a 12 point to nil lead after barely ten minutes of the match.
Sheffield steady the ship and were able to push deep into Tigers territory. However, after a prolonged period of pressure, the ball was turned over to Tigers and broke out down the left wing to score a third time. The conversion was added and Tigers led by 19 points to nil after 20 minutes. Sheffield regrouped and again began the task of attacking the Tigers try line, and with the half rapidly running away an attack right on Tigers line led to a yellow card being shown to the full back. However, Tigers repulsed the attack and were awarded a penalty of their own. Sheffield stole the ball at the line out and were again able to take the attack deep into Tigers 22-metre line. As the ball went along the back division an interjection from full-back Danny Williams opened up the Tigers defence for him to score under the posts. The conversion was added and the Tigers lead was reduced to 19 points to 7 as the half ended.
Sheffield started the second half well and soon found the wherewithal to open up the Tigers defence twice more over the next twenty minutes, converting both to take the lead at 21 points to 19. Indiscipline from Tigers led to a second yellow card and a penalty forty-five metres out, which was converted with some comfort. A second penalty, closer in was also converted to take the lead out to 27 points to 19. Sheffield then failed with a third penalty attempt, from nearly on half way, but the resulting clearance gave Sheffield possession and territory and they were soon battering on the Tigers try line. As the attack developed Tigers managed to strip the ball in a tackle, but then somehow managed to hand it back and Sheffield were able to score by the posts. Again, the try was converted and the lead was out to 34 points to 19. However, Tigers were never going to lie down and when Sheffield turned the ball over near Tigers 22-metre they mounted an attack. The attack down the left wing moved the play down the length of the field and led to Tigers scoring under the posts. The try was converted and the lead was reduced to 34 points to 26 with less than tern minutes to play. The battle raged, but neither side managed to add to their score and Sheffield hung on to their lead to win a hard-fought battle and progress to the final on Thursday, next week.