SCRFC hope for better results in 2016

Hinckley 1st XV 26 - 13 Sutton Coldfield 1st XV

Last Updated: Dec 24, 2015 08:45am
Sutton New Hall, Birmingham
By David Daniels
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National League 3 Midlands
Sutton made an excellent start against league leaders Hinckley, winning a long range penalty with their robust opening play in the first 3 minutes and although the penalty drifted wide Sutton kept their illustrious hosts pinned back in their own half throughout the opening exchanges.
Sutton were strong at the scrum and the early lineouts went well with Sutton looking more top of the table than bottom. The sustained pressure led to the award of a Sutton free kick in the Hinckley 22 and the Sutton captain George Ord spotted a chance. Taking a quick tap the 2nd row player caught the opposition off guard as he raced through their ranks to score an excellent try just to the right of the posts. Centre Alex White added the conversion to give the visitors a deserved 7 nil lead after 10 minutes of play. 
However, although Sutton continued to play positively errors started to creep into their game and a lineout misthrow handed good possession over to Hinckley. As Sutton tried to redeem the situation they suffered a yellow card at the scrum meaning they had to reshuffle their front row losing a back row player as a consequence. This put the Sutton scrum under increasing pressure and as Hinckley drove successive reset scrums towards the Sutton try line the referee finally awarded a penalty try to the league leaders. 
Fly half Mark Lord added the easy 2 points to level the scores after 20 minutes. 
Sutton came back strongly from the set back and drove play back into the Hinckley half of the field with good attacking rugby and positive play by backs and forwards alike, with fullback Nathan Burchell producing mesmerising counterattacking runs from deep and outside centre Tom McNamee punching holes in the midfield defence. Such was the sustained pressure and desperate defence from Hinckley that they lost a centre to the sin bin for 10 minutes. Unfortunately, with 15 minutes to play to the break Sutton were unable to make full capital out of having the extra man as once again whilst their lineout was fine in midfield it tended to misfire at key times when the stress levels grew in either 22, in attack and defence. 
During this period of play Sutton did win a penalty, which Alex White converted from 20 metre giving Sutton a slender 10-7 lead 30 minutes into the first half but Hinckley came back strongly following the restart and a slight knock-on handed possession to the league leaders who first won the resulting scrum on the edge of the Sutton 22 and then they set up a driving maul, which relentlessly headed for the Sutton try line at which point tight head prop Steve Harvey fell over the line to claim the try.  
The conversion drifted wide but the table toppers had regained the lead at 12-10 with 5 minutes to play to the end of the first half and with the lead came an increase in confidence. With the clock running down in a first half that seemed to go on for ever, centre Mitch Lamb weaved his way over to score to the right of the posts following an attack down the left wing, which was switched in field with good inter-passing to set up the centre. Mark Lord added the conversion to take a 19-10 lead into the half time break, much to the delight of the partisan and vocal home support, who were crowded into the stand, which protected them from the constant drizzle. 
Although Sutton fought back strongly at the start of the second half securing a penalty, which Alex White landed from 40 metres against the wind to close to 19-13 after just 4 minutes, the visitors faced a side intent on stretching their lead at the top of the table and although the next 30 minutes of play was evenly matched with neither side troubling the scoreboard operator it was the league leaders who closed out the game in the final five minutes with a try for no8 Huw Marden, to establish a 26-13 scoreline. The no8 was driven over following a lineout, which developed into a scrum close to the Sutton try line and in spite of a valiant effort Sutton had to concede defeat to the league leaders... but the team and supporters all know in their heart of hearts that this squad of players have the ability to turn this season round in the remaining 12 games to be played in the second half of the season.  
After the Christmas break Sutton return to league action on Saturday 9th Jan 2016, when they welcome local rivals Lichfield to the RSG, Walmley to continue their long history of tough competition, with Sutton looking for a win to kick start their season in 2016. KO 2.15pm
SCRFC - Off the field charitable works:
Although the Sutton rugby season has not gone according to plan so far this season, the club have been busy off the field with successful charitable work for their chosen charity, the Norman Laud Association, Birmingham Road, Wylde Green. 
On Monday 21st Dec 2015 representatives of Sutton Coldfield RFC including club president; Paul Rogers, head coach; Matt Nevitt, development coach; Joe Gavin and first XV team manager David Daniels plus club members representing the 1st XV, 2nd XV, 3rd XV and Ladies team respectively, took part in the tradition Santa Run, when Santa handed presents to the residential children who were staying overnight on Monday, with further presents left under the tree for distribution the next day after a surprize visit by Santa the night before.  
The club president Paul Rogers was also pleased to hand over cash to the value of £1,160.00 to NLA fund raiser Sharon McCullagh and duty manager Emma in lieu of NLA president & SCRFC stalwart Ben Smolden.  
The fund raising is obviously for the deserving children and young adults that the charity serves but also in recognition of the devotion and wonderful work done by the managers and carers at the charity, which the Sutton players see at first hand when they visit the home on such occasions as the annual Santa Run.  
The cash was raised by the club over the past 12 months or so via raffles and donations but the majority contribution came from the very successful fund raising club quiz nights run by Paul Rogers on the last Friday of each month, starting 7.30 pm. The next one is Friday 29th Jan 2016. 
Photo: file pic


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