Honours even as Kenilworth Ladies continue unbeaten run
Kenilworth Ladies and Aston Old Edwardians battled it out on Sunday with the match ending in a 15-15 draw at Glasshouse Lane to extend Kenilworth’s unbeaten run, writes Sophie Freestone.
Kenilworth’s only defeat came in the first game of the season away to Coalville back in September and the result on Sunday leaves them top of their league, nine points clear of Coalville who are now second.
The match was very much a battle of the two packs from the outset, in the wet and mud at Glasshouse Lane, and Kenilworth were quickest to adjust to the conditions. Number eight Caroline Spence opened the scoring for the hosts after a quick tap penalty from scrum half Rebecca Lane allowed her to bulldoze her way over from five metres out. The conversion from Vicky Stokes was just to the left of the uprights as the hosts held a 5-0 lead after seven minutes.
Aston responded with a simple penalty from full back Rachel Fowkes after 15 minutes to close the gap to just two points. As the half progressed it became clear that the match would be a close contest, with the promotion hopes of both sides on the line.
The visitors then gave themselves a five point lead with a converted try after 22 minutes when their centre ran a superb line to break through the Kenilworth defence from outside her 22 and dive over the line.
That try allowed Aston to go into the lead with a 10-5 lead but it was Kenilworth who once again started the half more strongly, with Spence adding to her previous score.
Having opted for a 5m line out from a penalty, Spence broke away from the back of the maul to charge over the line for her side’s second try to level the score. The conversion from Felicity Baldwin, now playing at number ten, was just short of the cross bar to keep the score at 10-10.
With the match entering the final stages, both sides were pushing for that all important score, and Aston were the side to nudge themselves back in front. Having made their way to the Kenilworth 22, the ball was taken out to the right where their centre spotted another hole to run through to score her second try of the afternoon.
Kenilworth then had the opportunity to level the scores but the try was disallowed for a double movement, and Spence went agonisingly close to a hat trick but was brought down just inches short of the line. The hosts’ persistence paid off however, and despite the conditions favouring the forwards it was full back Harrie Clemens who levelled the scores.
The speedster received the ball on the far left touchline, jinking and dancing her way through the Aston defence to score to the right of the posts. Baldwin’s conversion drifted to the right of the uprights as the match ended in a15-15 draw.
The Ladies are next in action on Sunday when they travel to Reading Abbey for the fourth round of the Junior Cup.