Back to Winning Ways
By Dan Preece
East Retford 1st XV 28 Pts
Gainsborough 1st XV 5 Pts
After a sorry defeat to Worksop in the previous week’s game Retford were looking to get some new wheels on their chariot and get back to the winning ways but this was going to be a challenge with nine players out from selection. With players playing out of position it proved hard to settle into any rhythm but it was Retford who made the first inroads.
An early penalty came Retford’s way but with the windy conditions it was always going to prove difficult to kick and was pushed wide. This was however repeated some moments later and Chris Trenham slotted the kick for a three point lead. Ten minutes later another kick missed the target before Gainsborough were to prove they were not there just for the ride and with a speculative chip over the top the Gainsborough winger pounced on the ball for a try and the lead.
For the next twenty minutes or so both sides struggled in the conditions with some very scrappy play with very little structure. It took until the end of the half before Retford could gain momentum and apply some pressure through their forwards for Simon Phillips to finish the job off with a good forwards try. This gave the home side a winning margin at the interval of eight points to five.
Retford started better in the second half gaining ground through some good running and solid support play but it took some ten minutes to break the visitors down before some more good handling saw the ball passed to Dan Fielding who crashed over for a try. Two yellow cards were issued to the visitors for some dubious tackling and Retford made the numbers count as shaun dove spotted a gap from scrum half to go over for Retford’s third try.
Retford were asserting the authority at this stage and after the forwards turned over the ball in the scrum the ball was taken on and several phases later Simon Palmer was in support to finish the move off with a well worked try fourth and bonus point try. The best play of the match was left to near the end of the match with Retford on the front foot going through the phases once again before a timely pass found Mick Sykes who hit a great line to score under the posts, once again the conversion was wayward.
Highlights of the game were Ed Bailey-Hobbs clearly over the line but managing to spill the ball and then Luke Hewgill with nobody in front of him and a clear run to the line seemed to get shot by a sniper as he crumpled up as he hit the floor both earning a Donkey award. Man of the Match was given justly to the stand in Captain on the day Dave Howard who led the team well but was unfortunate to finish the game injured a broken fibula and a dislocated ankle courtesy of EBH.
A week off for the first fifteen this week but look forward to a trip to Grimsby the following week a must win game with only four matches in the league remaining.