Notts Moderns 1st XV 12 Pts V East Retford 1st XV 25 Pts
By Iain Balmer
Retford travelled to the ground of Keyworth on Tuesday night to play in the Notts Lincs and Derby Cup under floodlights against Notts Moderns.
A team lying in tenth position in the league above Retford and one that Retford needed to target in their ever improving season.
Retford flew out of the blocks and were the only team on the park for the first fifteen minutes or so. Their forwards dominated in all quarters and the backs strong running was only kept at bay by some fine tackling from the Moderns defence.
Retford’s forceful play however came unstuck with a ripped ball by the Moderns player. The ball fell nicely into the hands of the centre that ran off up the park giving a timely pass for the winger to run on to and Moderns were on the scoreboard first with a converted try.
Retford had to gather their thoughts but continued to play on the front foot and were soon rewarded by another of Josh Nicklin’s darting runs dissecting the would be defence to score a well worked try, converted by Preece to bring the scores level. Retford continued the pressure and before the interval were rewarded with a penalty well struck by Preece to bring the half to a close with Retford leading by fifteen points to seven.
Unfortunately the official had to issue cards to players from both sides as the tension grew and at one time Retford were down to thirteen players but still worked hard enough in defence to keep Moderns out. It was a great ballsy display as Retford worked to keep their opponents under pressure and it did seem at times that they had nowhere to go as they were put under pressure time and time again.
Under pressure in the right corner as their defender was tackled on the line for the ball to spring free and J J Freeman pounced to collect the try. This was soon followed in the same corner a scramble for the ball but Dave Howard came up with the ball and powered over for another try this had really put the game beyond Notts Moderns reach but they kept going.
Running out of time and coming down the slope the Moderns number ten showed his class, finding the gap to score bringing the final score line but it was a consolation try at the end of the game. Retford will play Ashfield in their next round another team from the league above but this their thirteenth win on the trot was a timely message to the league above.