1st XV Match report - 9th Mar 2019
By Ken Sims
Worcester RFC 36pts v Sutton Coldfield 0pts
SCRFC 1st XV Team Manager
Worcester RFC 36pts v Sutton Coldfield 0pts
Sutton's dismal run of disappointing defeats continued last weekend with a 36-0 defeat at the hands of Worcester RFC, another game affected by selection issues due to injury and availability problems but in spite of the late changes this was another win that was within Sutton's compass if only they could learn to take the excellent chances they create. In their current mind set, Sutton have lost the ability to finish when they are within metres of the try line and once this is resolved the doors to the winners room will open wide!
In the meantime Sutton have to come to terms with the changes to the team which have occurred over recent weeks, with a knee injury excluding Club Captain & mainstay of the front row Sean Harrison for the rest of the season together with fellow stalwart props Liam Hills, who is working in Aberdeen and Chris Handley, who is on the treatment table along with the inspirational Luke Stewart, who has inspired the team to success from the key no8 spot over recent seasons but is also likely to be out until next season.
Against this backdrop of a growing injury list Sutton are relying on the youthful talent they have in abundance in the forwards and the backs but unfortunately whilst individually each player is playing well, collectively because of the constant changes the team play has lost the fluency it had earlier in the season and whilst creating good chances they not carrying through to deliver the points their efforts deserve when they are close to scoring.
Again this was true in the game last weekend when Sutton kicked off in dry but windy conditions and the visitors applied all the early pressure in the Worcester 22 but they were unable to make the pressure count and a penalty for not releasing close to the Worcester try line allowed the home side to relieve the pressure.
With play taken into the Sutton half for the first time following the kick off Worcester launched their first attack driving play up field on their right flank before switching left across the face of the Sutton posts to put left wing Will Carroll into space on the left and the winger cut infield to score a well taken try to the left of the posts. Centre Ollie Meadows added the conversion to give Worcester a 7-0 lead after 13 minutes and very much against the run of play.
5 minutes later Sutton were caught off side in front of their posts and Ollie Meadows landed the penalty to extend the lead to 10-0 and although Sutton fought back during the remaining 22 minutes of the half they were unable to make any impact on the scoreboard so Worcester started the second half with a 10-0 lead, which they extended to 15-0 after just 4 minutes of play when centre Ollie Meadows finished off a strong attack which started on the Worcester right and then swung left where the centre found space to race in for Worcester's second try of the day.
The centre missed with his conversion attempt and from the restart the spirited Sutton side set about reducing the deficit with an all out attack down their right wing winning a penalty, which fly half Jack Duthie kicked accurately to the right corner for a 5 metre lineout. Under the influence of newly installed hooker Chris Bancroft the lineouts were working well and once again Sutton won clean ball from their own throw to set up a catch and drive but just as it seemed inevitable that Sutton would score their opening try 8 minutes into the second half, the ball was knocked on just short of the line.
The next period of play saw the game ebb and flow with Sutton pressing but frustratingly being denied a break through and in the closing 15 minutes Worcester scored a late trio of tries with Chris Gill on as a replacement at no8 scrambling in for a try on 26 minutes then the same player grounded a pushover try on 32 minutes, before Worcester stole the ball from Sutton denying the visitors a consolation try as they drove for the Worcester try line in the closing seconds of injury time and replacement Will Trumper was sent racing down the right touchline on a 90 metre dash to the Sutton try line.. and to add insult to injury Ollie landed a wobbly wind assisted touch line conversion on the final whistle to convert all of the last 3 tries for the final score line of 36-0.
A few particular highlights for Sutton from the game was the assured performance of Jack Duthie making his first appearance at fly half with deft distribution of the ball, the all round ability and in particular the lineout work by hooker Chris Bancroft, with a strong performance in the second row by 18 year old Lewis Belton performing to a standard well above his young years and fullback TJ Allwood stepped up a level and performed heroically under the high ball on a blustery day performing well with confidence and assurance...and props Danny Griffin and Jonah Falconer, who stepped up and performed well having been thrown in the deep end after injuries to the regular front row players.
Sutton take another break from league rugby this weekend with a scheduled break in the league proramme and they return to league action with a home game against Whitchurch RFC at the RSG, Walmley Road. KO 3pm
Sutton Colts - Sunday 10th Mar 2019
Sutton Coldfield Colts 22pts v Birmingham/Solihull Colts 5pts
North Midlands Colts League.
Happily Sutton Colts returned to winning ways at home last weekend taking a 10-0 lead into the break before completing a convincing 22-5 bonus point league victory over Birmingham/Solihull Colts.
The four Sutton tries were scored respectively by Ryan Potter after 16 minutes, Finley Port after 23 minutes in the first half and then Harvey White on 41 minutes with the bonus point try scored by Ben Wall on 62 minutes. Harry Wheelwright converted Harvey Whites try immediately after the break to complete the 22 point score line.