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Sat 30
Senior XV
Clinical Performance sees Spalding Reach Semi Finals of Midlands RFU Vase Cup

Clinical Performance sees Spalding Reach Semi Finals of Midlands RFU Vase Cup

By Nicky Franklin
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A very clinical performance away at Manor Park, Nuneaton, on Saturday saw Spalding go marching through to the Semi Finals of the Midlands Section of the National RFU Vase Cup competition

Electing to play with the slope advantage in the first half Spalding immediately impressed the home supporters, with the way they were retaining possession, setting up rucks and quickly recycling the ball mainly through the forwards.

Flanker, Harry Cole using his pace and power, created an opening after six minutes through the middle and when tackled, Ash Ankar continued the momentum and scoring under the posts, with Conall Mason converting. Spalding had set the tone for the match and never lost the lead.

Manor Park possessed a strong pack of forwards, but Spalding never let them get on top. Luke Turner was caught obstruction play around the tackle area with the penalty kick converted. Ten minutes later Spalding were penalised for holding onto the ball after a tackle and another good long range penalty brought the home team right back into the match

Spalding’s lineout was working well with Anker supplying scrum half Wilson Taylor with good ball and from one of these lineouts, after thirty minutes, Harry Sharman broke free to score under the posts for a converted try

The home team had further chances to reduce the lead as the referee was strictly managing the breakdown, awarding two penalties in quick succession, one penalty kick hitting the upright but the second sailed through reducing the lead to five points

But Spalding forwards continued to drive forward with Ryan Chappell always making good yardage and both John Barrett and Peter Waudby prominent as Spalding established themselves deep in Manor Park’s twenty two. Ruck established with Sharman acting as scrum half, spotting no guard defence waltzed unopposed under the posts and with another successful conversion, the referee blew for half time with Spalding leading by 21 points to 9

At the break Ben Shields was replaced by Taylor Crowson going to fullback with Gav Sharman moving to right wing

Manor Park upped their game with some big carries especially their number eight and the right winger but Spalding’s defence held firm led by Dan Adams storming into every tackle and well supported by fly half Mason, who was having another good game and Willis Ingleby in the backs

With the home team making little headway frustration built up and their Lock was red carded for a highly dangerous shoulder charge connecting with Anker’s head and reacting Turner was also yellow carded

Both teams lost concentration for the next 10 minutes, with both Sharman and Da Silva receiving yellow cards, as well as a Manor Park player

But it was the home team who capitalised as they encamped in Spalding’s half, a strong scrum, followed by a quick tap penalty caught Spalding napping and again the lead was cut back to five points

Both Spalding wings were now finding space and Callum Lewis featured as he gather safely several high kicks and counterattacked. But is was a superb kick by Mason, deep into open space that saw Gav Sharman race down his wing, outpacing the defence and with a clean pick up was over for Spalding’s fourth try of the afternoon sealing a deserved away Cup win

This was an excellent team performance winning again away from home, whilst the other quarterfinals were all won by the home team.

Next Saturday Spalding return to playing league matches and have a tough home match against local rivals Stamford KO 2.15 who are flying high in Midlands Three East (South)

Team, Peter Waudby, John Barrett, Luke Turner, Ash Anker, Miguel Da Silva, Harry Cole, Ryan Chappell, Harry Sharman, Wilson Crowson, Conall Mason, Callum Lewis, Dan Adams, Willis Ingleby, Ben Shields, Gav Sharman, Subs Macaulay Crane, Taylor Crowson, Jacob Greaves

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Match date

Sat 30, Nov 2019