Sutton Win Key Away Game

Old Halesonians 13 - 15 Sutton Coldfield

Last Updated: Mar 18, 2014 12:40pm
Sutton New Hall, Birmingham
By David Daniels
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National League 3 Midlands


After a high intensity top of the table contest between 3rd place Old Hales and 4th place Sutton, with the result very important to the league ambitions of both teams, it was Sutton who prevailed with a narrow 15-13 victory to move above Old Hales and Nuneaton into second place, behind league leaders Broadstreet at this critical stage in the season when dreams can be made or lost.

With all teams now having played 22 league games, there are only 4 games left and although Sutton are currently in prime position, the competition for the play off place will be a tight contest that is likely to run right to the end of the season. So watch this space to monitor the end of a compelling contest at the top of an evenly matched and highly competitive league!!

In a low scoring game the importance of the occasion appeared to affect both teams and neither side performed at their best, with  simple errors causing chances to be missed and mistakes led to turnovers preventing any fluency in the play but it was Sutton who took their chances to lead 15-8 with 15 minutes to play. However, Old Hales rallied to score a final try to close to 15-13 with just 2 minutes left to play setting up a tense finale but Sutton held on to secure another close victory at the Wassal Grove ground, Hagley.

With both sides scoring two tries each the game hinged on the battle of the boot with Sutton's flyhalf Alex White kicking a penalty and a conversion, missing just one conversion but his opposite number kicked just one penalty unusually missing four penalties and two conversions, hence the scoreline of 15-13. After a testing opening period Sutton opened the scoring on 25 minutes with a 35m penalty by Alex White but 8 minutes before the break centre Andy Robinson ran back a poor clearance kick to give Old Halesonians a 5-3 lead, however the visitors responded well and a try by centre Jon Raistrick converted by Alex White gave Sutton a 10-5 interval lead.

Sutton pressed on in the second half but Old Hales fought back and a successful penalty by Andy Robinson closed the score to 10-8 midway through the final period to set up a tense finish. However, Sutton showed true character and came back strongly to create a try for skipper Dave Edwards, who drove home through the last ditch defenders to stretch the Sutton lead to 15-8 before prop Tom Dempsey scrambled a consolation try for the home side, who felt hard done by after a tight contest, but Sutton can now move forward with a play off place clearly within their reach.

This weekend Sutton welcome South Leicester to Walmley Road, for what will be another testing contest as the final countdown begins. KO 3pm. 


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