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Earlsdon 20 - 34 Kenilworth

Kenilworth RFC Weekend Round Up

Last Updated: Nov 5, 2014 09:26pm
Kenilworth, Warwick
By Willie Whitesmith
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On an unseasonably warm and sunny day for November, Kenilworth looked to continue their winning ways with a visit to local rivals Earlsdon, writes Ralph Murray.

Kenilworth set off at a healthy pace and looked to make all the early running but, too often, the attacks foundered on poor decision making or the ref’s whistle. As the attacks continued, one such move produced a spectacular series of passes which looked odds on to produce one of the scores of the season but no try was given and Earlsdon cleared their lines. On the rare occasions in this opening period that Earlsdon ventured into the Ks’ half the visitors’ defence was more than up to the job. The pressure finally brought reward as an attempted clearance from Earlsdon was charged down by Ed Hannam and Arthur Haynes crossed to open the scoring and, in what was to become a feature of the afternoon, Josh Hickman kicked an extremely difficult conversion.

The pressure on Earlsdon’s line continued unabated but, too often, the Kenilworth players were taking their passes standing still and not extracting the maximum advantage from their endeavours. Some of the attacks were halted by the tackler not releasing or other infringements at the breakdown and eventually this resulted in a penalty allowing Hickman to extend the lead to 0-10.

Just as Kenilworth looked to be establishing a dominant position they allowed their opponents into the game with some poor tackling allowing the Earlsdon flanker to score despite a suspicion of a forward pass and some crossing involved. But the Ks response was immediate as James Wadey picked up from the set scrum and found scrum half Gareth Renowden who faked right before crashing over close to the post. Josh Hickman was again successful with the extras. Earlsdon looked to respond in kind and with an attacking scrum 10m out were in a good position to do so. Despite the tight-head scrummaging at near 45 degrees this went unpunished but still the visitors’ defence stood firm as half-time was called at 7-17. 

Asleep at the restart, Kenilworth allowed Earlsdon a further lifeline as some sloppy defence saw the hosts open the second half scoring with a converted try. But that stirred Kenilworth into upping their game and a series of threatening moves looked to take back the initiative; one such attack saw winger Joe Jepps run from deep inside his 22 and make nearly 40m before the ref decided there had been some crossing earlier in the move and a successful penalty for Earlsdon made it 17 apiece. Time and again Kenilworth were prevented from making full use of their possession by the Earlsdon defence being continuously offside but no whistle. An unsavoury incident now produced a turning point in the match; an Earlsdon forward took exception to Josh Hickman retaining the ball and stamped on the full back in the head area for which he was shown a red card. By way of partial retribution, Hickman nailed the conversion but almost immediately the ref awarded a pen at the other end and Earlsdon were again level at 20 apiece.

A sense of urgency now took hold and Kenilworth were more definite in their attacks; the ball was passed through a series of hands to put winger Arthur Haynes away for his second try of the day. Again Hickman faced with the most challenging of angles made no mistake and it’s a one-score game at 20-27. With time running down Rhys Jones breaks from his own line in search of the bonus point score; he finds other forwards and backs in support, the ball ending with Arthur Haynes on the left wing. There was still work to do but this was Haynes’s day; he stepped the final defender and hugged the touchline to complete a fine hat-trick. Hickman can’t miss and the day’s work was complete.

Another win but sterner tasks await. Kenilworth made hard work of this but were deserved winners in the end but accuracy and decision making will need improving as matches against the league leaders are close at hand.     


Kenilworth Colts v Old Leamingtonians Colts  1st November 2014

This game was tuned on its head, when an illegal tackle by Kenilworth resulted in a red card after 15mins. Until then the Kens were coasting to an easy victory against an OL's team that just could not get their hands on the ball. It then progressively grew into a closer and closer encounter, as Ols made the man advantage count.

Kens held out to win 36-21

 

Tries

Jamie Allen

Harvey Joy 2

Sam Bailey 2

Oscar Haynes

Conversions

Alex Gyetvai 3

 

Kenilworth started the game by putting OL's under pressure from the kick off. A knock on went against the Kens and at the following scrum Kenilworth won the ball against the head and with constant pressure Jamie Allen went over to score his first try for the team. Great Conversion by Alex 7 Nil. 3 mins.

Kens were clearly on top and winning possession, then Hugh Whidbourne broke though OL's defence on the half way line and charged over the 22 to offload the ball(fantastic skill) from 2 tacklers to Harvey Joy running close behind. He went in under the post. 14 Nil. Easy one for Alex. 9 mins.

This was looking like an easy day out for the Kens until the 25th minute when an illegal tackle resulted in a red card for the Kens player. However, the resulting penalty kick for touch made no ground and Kenilworth nicked it. Quick passes brought in the Kens Full back Bailey and he ran 60m to score. Great conversion from Alex near touch. 21/nil. 30Mins.

The red card seemed to invigorate the Kens forwards, who now went into overdrive and were winning ball from almost every confrontation. At the kick off, 2/3 phases of play brought Kenilworth to half way and Oscar at Scrum Half box kicked,  to find the OL's Full Back out of position. He eventually collected the ball and kicked a poor punt straight to our Fly Half who flung it down the line to Bailey, who scorched down the wing to score under the posts. Easy kick for Alex 26/nil Half Time.

Wheatabix was obviously on the menu at half time for Ols. They came out a different team and with a new strategy to make the man advantage work. In an early contact from the kick off Ols found a 2 man advantage and used it to score down the wing, up and under the posts. 7 points.

26/7  37 mins.

However, from the resulting kick off, Kens came back with a vengeance and won the ball after a great drop kick from Harvey. The forwards drove towards the line  and after many phases, Oscar at Scrum Half darted around the ruck to score from 10yards 31/7. No conversion.

From the kick off Ols put Kens under pressure and the defence was lacking. The extra man was now beginning to tell and OL's scored from broken play through the centre. 31/14

The game was now very different. OL gradually getting on top of the breakdown as the Kens forwards tired. Injuries also started to play a part. OL could just not string the crucial pass together, but it was coming.  A penalty well kicked for touch resulted in a great position for Ols and their forwards scored it. Easy Kick 31/21. This was now getting close and only 23 mins played in the second half could the Kens hold out.

From the kick off Kenilworth put OL's under great pressure. This was the first attack for some time and through 4/5 phases of play Kens rumbled on. Eventually, Harvey playing Scrum Half darted around the pack and scored a crucial 5 points 36/14 to restore the points buffer. 58 mins.

Changed were now made to shore up Kens defence and for the next 12 minuted Kens absorbed everything that Ol's could throw at them, including being held up over the line twice. It was a good thing that we were winning against the head, as almost certainly OL's would have scored again.

This was a match where Ken Colts came of age. Great team work and determination won the day.

 

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