This match was ultimately won by Andy Goode sprinting towards the corner in the dying seconds to drag the Newbold 13 into touch before reaching the try line. Phew! - a close game, but a depleted Kenilworth were the worthy winners.
The opening exchanges of this match were a cautious affair, but it would be fair to say that Newbold seemed to have the upper hand in the early action. Kenilworth often infringed at the break down and so put themselves under pressure from penalty kicks. One of these resulted in the first Newbold try. A kick to the corner resulted in a driving maul that was stopped by the Kens but the pass out to the Newbold 13, left him space to sprint through for the first points. No conversion
Nil - 5. 7 mins.
Things then got rapidly worse, when the kick off after 2-3 phases of play ended up in the same man's hands, who went down the wings to score again under the posts. The kicker got this one and we were 12 nil down after 8 mins. The future looked ominous.
Kenilworth, then started, bit by bit to drag themselves back into the match. No more penalties and better protection of the man on the ground saw the Kens starve Newbold of any possession. In fact in order to get the ball penalties were conceded by the Bolds. We were winning most of the lineouts and the putting Newbold under pressure at every scrum.
At 24 mins, 2 such penalties and the kicks brought Kenilworth to the Newbold 5m line with a line out cleanly taken. The rolling maul was halted, but in a planned move saw Romee take the ball on the angle and cut through the defence to score. (See Photo) No Conversion 5-12.
Surprisingly, Newbold heads seemed to drop despite still being ahead. Kenilworth now took the fight to Newbold with the forwards leading the way with an attacking off loading game that Newbold found difficult to defend. The end result was a penalty kicked from half way to the corner by Zack that was inch perfect. The line out and rolling maul worked to perfection and over we went for our try by Henry Cooke, unconverted 10/12 32 minutes. Half Time
The second half saw more of the same. Kenilworth making attack after attack but often held out in the last metre. The threat was always there that Newbold could hit back with a try from distance but on the three occasions this happened the defence was good.
On one occasion at 15 mins the Kens were gifted a penalty in front of the posts. Despite the persistent screaming from the side of the pitch, the lads opted bravely, some would say foolishly for a kick to the corner. This ultimately saw a crooked throw and no score.
Kenilworth, though could just not get over the line, until Ben Green playing Scrum Half for the first time, instead of the injured Harvey who had come off, saw a gap between the scrum and defence. From 10 yards out, he went through the gap and had the strength to ground the ball against 2 tacklers. 15-12. 30mins 2nd Half.
The final moments of the half were tense as Newbold threw everything they had left at trying to score. A turnover ball in the centre saw their 13 break the first tackle and head off down the wing, he outstripped both defenders for pace and a certain try and loss of the game loomed. Then out of nowhere, at an angle Andy Goode threw himself at the hapless 13 and dragged his feet into touch before he could offload. The danger was not over, until the ref consulted his watch and blew for time. Relief is not the word for it!