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Lost Opportunities Prove Costly

Belper 12 - 8 Mansfield

Last Updated: Sep 21, 2016 07:09am
Oak Tree, Mansfield
By Mansfield Sports Reporter
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Belper elected to play down the deceptively acute slope for the first half of the game and although both sides made the most of that particular advantage when they had it, the Derbyshire side made it count up when faced with playing uphill in the second half. 

Head Coach Wayne Robinson said, “There were plenty of try scoring opportunities and despite enough possession to take the lead we could not make it count when it mattered”. Despite Mansfield taking the lead with a penalty from Ryan Hill after just three minutes it was the Derbyshire outfit who registered the first and only try of the opening half. 

Belper had the Lion’s share of possession for most of the half and made the most of the slope ensuring Mansfield had to focus on defending for the most part. The home Stand-Off who had a fine afternoon was a thorn in the side of the visiting defence and threatened to breakthrough constantly. As Mansfield tried to run out of defence, a pass was intercepted only to be spilt on the way to the line. Unfortunately a carbon copy of that move just 4 minutes later resulted in a try under the posts and the home side led 7-3. 

Mansfield spent most of the first half in their own territory as the home side enjoyed the slope. Belper had enough territory and possession to put the game away and it was only some robust defence from the blue and whites that denied them. 

The visitors had the slope in the second half and it proved to be the case again that the side with the slope enjoyed all the territory and possession. Again, the side playing uphill was forced to defend for the most part.  

After twenty five minutes and a sustained period of attack the blue and whites finally made it through the home defence with a try from Nathan Hill. The scoreboard now read 8-7 and Mansfield had taken the lead again. A missed conversion and further missed penalty prevented Mansfield from extending their advantage. 

Having taken the lead just two minutes later the home side scored the decisive try after breaking out of their own half and the stranglehold Mansfield had on the game. Following a try saving tackle from Ryan Hill Belper recycled the ball well and scored out wide which resulted in the final score of 12-8. Mansfield did have the chance to take the game with one particular opportunity that went begging late in the half when and overlap was ignored and the chance lost. Belper took their only chance well in the second half and ran out deserved winners.  

On the 1st October Mansfield host Birstall RFC and the Kick-off is 3pm. You can follow the action on Twitter, just go to @MansfieldRugby.

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