Coventry Still Have a Part to Play

SSE National League 1 Round 28 Review

Last Updated: Apr 3, 2014 10:54am
Sherbourne, Coventry
By Nicol McClelland
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Coventry, currently a distant third in SSE National League One, still have a huge part to play in deciding the title race with back-to-back games over the next fortnight against the top two sides in the division.

Phil Maynard's men play second-placed Rosslyn Park in south-west London this Saturday before taking on table-topping Doncaster at the Butts Park Arena the following weekend.
Park's 21-18 win over the Knights on Saturday closed the gap at the top of the table to four points with just three rounds to play. A tightly contested game, which included three yellow cards in total, was finally secured by the capital side with less than 10 minutes to go when scrum half Jack [censored] pounced on a mistake by opposite number Bruno Bravo to score under the posts.
Coventry will be anything but pushovers for either side though. The Midlands outfit have scored 20 tries in winning three of their last four games, their only defeat being a one-point loss away to Tynedale. On Saturday they trounced one-time title contenders Esher, 43-0. Full-back and captain Cliffie Hodgson scored one of his side's six tries and kicked 13 points to take him on to 340 points for the season - a new club record.
Doncaster, meanwhile, will be fancied to maintain their unbeaten home league record when they welcome Wharfedale to Castle Park. However, the visitors are likely to provide stiffer opposition than of late having won for the first time in over two months, two tries from star wing Scott Jordan helping the Green Machine to a 28-25 win at Old Albanian.
Realistically, any two teams from five could still join doomed Hull Ionians in playing at a lower level next season. Tynedale are best-placed to avoid the drop after continuing their fine form since the turn of the year with a 45-21 win away to the league's bottom side. Flanker Dan Temm and wing Hamish Smales both scored a brace of tries apiece for the Corbridge side who have won eight times out of 11 in 2014.
Tynedale are now eight points and four places better off than second-from bottom Worthing who were edged out 21-16 by fellow strugglers Henley at Dry Leas. Cinderford still occupy the third and final relegation place despite coming from 19-3 down to beat Loughborough Students 22-19.after second-half tries from Roger Birkin and Jack Adams. The Forresters have two games in hand on the sides above them, with Henley and Loughborough Students one and three points better off respectively.
John Attlee bagged a brace of tries for the second week running as Richmond 'nilled' Fylde, 36-0, while fellow No.8 Jason Smithson scored twice, his second try proving to be the match winner, in a 22-16 home win for Blaydon over Blackheath.

Results, Saturday March 30
Blaydon 22 Blackheath 16
Cinderford 22 Loughborough Students 19
Coventry 43 Esher 0
Henley 21 Worthing 16
Hull Ionians 21 Tynedale 45
Old Albanian 25 Wharfedale 28
Richmond 36 Fylde 0
Rosslyn Park 21 Doncaster 18




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