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National Under 20 Championship

North Midlands RFU

Last Updated: Feb 25, 2014 06:06am
St. Stephen, Worcester
By Paul Bolton
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EAST Midlands improved their prospects of reaching the quarter-finals of the National Under 20 Championship with a 15-5 win over North Midlands at Bedford Athletic’s Putnoe Wood ground this afternoon.

Uncontested scrums were played for the last 55 minutes of the match after North Midlands lost four of the five specialist front row forwards in their squad to injuries in the opening exchanges.

East Midlands were 8-0 up at that stage through an early penalty from Cambridge fly-half Ben Penfold and an 18th minute try from Stockport wing Joe Cantwell.

Further East Midlands pressure was resisted by North Midlands who defended tenaciously and then reduced the deficit to just three points when Worcester University wing Reece Chapman-Cary crossed for an unconverted try after 72 minutes.

East Midlands made the game safe when Cambridge tighthead pro Callum Miller crossed late on and Penfold added the conversion.

East Midlands will be guaranteed a quarter-final place if Eastern Counties, who beat North Midlands in their opening pool match, beat Notts, Lincs & Derbyshire at Newark tomorrow (February 23).

North Midlands need NLD to win that match if they are to keep alive their own hopes of progressing to the knockout stages.

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