Not much need be said about this result. The Medics, on the back of a strong performance against West Leeds, ultimately underperformed at home against West Park Leeds.
The students started the game sloppily. After some powerful West Park forward play around the fringes of several breakdowns, combined with some weak medics’ defending, the opening try was scored under the posts. Conversion slotted- 7 -0 to WPL.
After this early setback the Medics started to look more solid and confident, and clawed their way back into the match with two penalties. At least one try arguably should have been scored in the first half with Causer going close after some tidy back play, only for the ball to spill out under pressure after a final lunge for the tryline. Shaw also went close but was tackled into touch by the corner flag. This “close but no cigar” theme ran throughout the match for the medics.
After a late surge from WPL in the first half, some strong tryline defending was required to ensure that the visitors didn’t widen their winning margin before half- time. After a close half with the Medics playing well after an early lapse, the score was 6-7.
The second half was very disappointing from the Medics’ point of view. After some early West Park pressure an attacking lineout led to a try from a rolling maul. Conversion missed, 6-12 to West Park Leeds. Some further pressure led to a second try of the half, with the West Park winger going over in the corner after a well executed backs move off a line out.
This made the score 6-17. The Medics, fired up with a very vocal record crowd at their backs, responded with some powerful play of their own and dragged the score back to 12-17 with two kicks at goal. Despite looking dangerous in parts in open play and coming close to the West Park tryline on a few different occasions, the medics made too many errors in the second half. Some unstructured rugby, and uncharacteristic mistakes ultimately meant that the medics would fall short in the match. Final score 12-17.
Full credit to West Park Leeds who defended well throughout and took their tries well.
The medics gave a much stronger account of themselves in the hours following the match. A fairy tale story of damsels in distress, chivalrous knights and foul monsters was to unfold. The details are somewhat cloudy, lost in the legend, but a heroic evening of fantasy family fun was enjoyed by all.