Worksop win Semi-Final derby Double Header
By Dan Preece
East Retford 29
Despite making a good start, Retford were turned over and after a long advantage, Worksop opened the scoring. The next ten minutes saw some very competitive rugby from both sides. Retford were most effective out wide and when brothers Mikey and Simon Philips combined well with Dave Howard, space opened up for in form winger Dan Lodge to score in the corner, very well converted by Preece from out wide. Simon Philips scored next as he showed great awareness to scavenge the ball in open play, find a gap and race through to score the second converted try. Worksop showed pace of their own in response and good handling allowed them to score their second, the score 12-14 to Retford. Retford responded immediately through the captain Preece adding three penalty points, and then more great handling from a number of players allowed ‘The Fridge’ Dan Lodge to cross for his second, converted well from wide again by Preece. Worksop were powerful in their response. A back row move set up their third try and then a well worked lineout and maul meant the score was poised at 24-24 at half time, with all to play for!
Worksop started well after the break with more powerful forward play leading to two tries and they started to dominate possession as they resorted to their usual physical and confrontational style of play. For a brief period Retford closed the gap through more great handling out wide and brilliance from hat-trick hero Dan Lodge on the wing, finishing a great third try with pace and power. Worksop leading 36-29. This was not enough however in response to Worksop’s dominance at the ruck and set piece which led to their fifth try, shortly followed by a sixth after a mistake on the line by Wilson running back to clear his lines. In a last ditch effort to get into the game, another Retford mistake allowed Worksop to have the last laugh and deservedly progress into the Notts Cup Final. Retford must rebuild on what was an embarrassing defeat and look forward to the title race in the closing games of the season. Full credit to Dan Lodge for his outstanding Man of the Match performance on the wing as he continues his fine form.