Hosts’ transition skills do for the Bulls
By Phil Brown
Bulls fight hard to rescue bonus point
Travelling with high expectation, the Bulls came undone against a very good counter attacking performance by Market Harborough.
The pattern was set early after an attacking foray by the Ives ended with the ball turned over. Harborough were immediately into their stride and pierced the Ives defence to score.
The same was to follow shortly after when another promising attack was blunted, only for early missed tackles to leave the back field too much to do.
Ives then got into their stride and put pressure on the host. After a series of penalty line outs, Alex Henly
, who had a fine game, crashed over to score.
From the kick off, the ball was lost and a simple move saw Harborough respond immediately.
A yellow card for persistent offside gave Ives a man advantage. The forwards, typified by bulldozing runs by tommy newman
, set up the platform for Paul Ashbridge
to dart through and score.
Again while applying pressure, a speculative kick over by the host 9 was lost by the Ives, who then found themselves behind their line as Harborough gained the bonus point try before half time.
Harborough were buoyed by the score and immediately after half time attached the breakdown with gusto to force turnovers. Two quick tried followed.
Right up against it, Ives began to play with fire and purpose. A feisty John Naylor
was to the fore as the Ives gained some pride by scoring two tries to secure their own bonus point.
The first was a well read interception by Henly for his second.
The next followed a good continuous move by most of the 15, until Naylor dotted down.
Pressing for a further score that may have secured a second point, Ives lost possession and a kick over was well taken by Harborough who supported well to complete the scoring.
Ives will dust themselves down and look forward to the home fixture with Oakham following a week off.