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Sutton's form dips against Hereford

Hereford 12 - 6 Sutton Coldfield

Last Updated: Sep 12, 2016 07:45pm
Sutton New Hall, Birmingham
By David Daniels
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Midlands 1 West - level 6

 

After their promising and positive start to the new season on week one with a good home victory over old rivals Dudley Kingswinford, which put Sutton into 5th place in the league, last weekend Sutton's form dipped in their first away game as they slipped to a narrow 12-6 defeat at Hereford.  

Trailing 12-3 at halftime after succumbing to successive long range breakaway tries down the Hereford left wing, one of which was converted; very much against the run of play and having dominated possession and territory throughout, Sutton found themselves fighting a rear-guard action and in spite of a strong second half performance Sutton failed to translate pressure into points having to settle for just another 3 points from the boot of Tom McNamee to close to 6 points, which secured the consolation of a losing bonus point to maintain their mid-table league position (6th) with two games completed. 

In the story of the game, Sutton kicked off in light drizzle and overcast conditions, with the floodlights on and although the underfoot conditions and the ball were very slippery, leading to falls and handling problems affecting both teams, Sutton came to terms with the conditions and played some good attacking rugby but unfortunately penalties and handling errors interrupted the flow of the game with possession and territory changing hands in equal measure during the opening quarter of the game. 

Unfortunately 18 minutes into the first half, the game swung in favour of the host club when Sutton dropped the ball on the halfway line and the Hereford left wing Will Ford was quick to react and kick the ball on. The winger pursued the ball down the left wing before kicking it on again and he was able to take advantage of a kind bounce as the ball stayed in field and crossed the Sutton try line when he beat the Sutton defenders in the close race to ground the ball, for a well taken try. Centre Morgan Goodall then added to Sutton's pain with a perfectly judged touchline conversion to give the host club a 7-0 lead, much to the delight of their large fan base. 

Sutton suffered a yellow card 6 minutes into the game to frustrate their initial game plan but following the opening try Hereford also suffered a yellow card 25 minutes into the game to level things up. However neither side were able to take full advantage of the numerical advantage and although Sutton pressed hard and lay siege to the Hereford try line for the full 10 minutes they were unable to find a way to cross the line. Finally Sutton frustration led to a penalty and Hereford were able to clear the ball to the halfway line. 

With Hereford restored to 15 men and with halftime fast approaching Sutton again lost possession on the halfway line and Hereford broke through the Sutton line to race clear down the left wing then as the Sutton defenders closed in on the runner, he passed the ball outside to winger Will Ford, who crossed in the corner unopposed for another well taken opportunists try. Fortunately for Sutton the difficult conversion drifted to the left and the deficit remained at 12-0 with 2 minutes to play till the interval. 

Sutton responded positively at the restart and won a penalty on the Hereford 10 metre line to the left of the posts. With no time left for a lineout up stepped Tom McNamee with his powerful right foot to put Sutton on the scoreboard with a brilliant 50 metre, long range penalty to take the score to 12-3 with the last kick of the half. 

Sutton started the second half strongly but for all their effort they were unable to turn pressure into points and 15 minutes into the second half skipper Jack Woodcock turned to his long range specialist Tom McNamee to land another 50 metre penalty to bring Sutton to within a converted try to secure the victory they were chasing. 

Unfortunately it was not to be and the game was played to a conclusion with no further score by either side allowing the partisan Hereford supporters to celebrate their first win of the season and leaving the Sutton team and supporters to travel back to Sutton regretting the loss but trying to gain solace from the losing bonus point which still keeps them in contention thanks to favourable results from other teams. 

To put Sutton's opening day victory into context, Dudley Kinswinford themselves achieved a 26-15 bonus point win over Whitchurch last weekend to move one place above Sutton with 6 points to Sutton's 5 in a very competitive league and with Kenilworth next up at the RSG, Walmley Rd this weekend Sutton have every chance to make amends for their lapse last weekend and move forward with another win. 

... So this weekend Sutton welcome another old rival Kenilworth RFC on their return to the RSG, Walmley Rd, after many season's when their respective leagues have kept the clubs apart and only cup games have brought them together. KO 3 pm.

 

The supporters of both sides will receive a warm welcome on the touchline and in the bar afterwards.

 

Other team results:  


Development side;

 

The Sutton Development side playing as a 2nd XV and combining youth and experience kept the Sutton flag flying proudly at Hereford with an excellent 36-17 away victory over a useful Hereford 2nd XV. The team has been coached and nurtured by Sutton's newly appointed head coach Joe Gavin, who is responsible for developing the talent within the Sutton ranks as players develop from the very successful mini & junior section of the club into the senior teams. As well as his coaching duties in this game Joe showed he is still a fine player as due to late cry-offs he took to the field and scored two excellent tries from the wing with fellow winger Luke Fleming matching him with a brace himself together with 17 year old Harry Moxon, who scored Sutton's other try and 19 year old T J Allwood, who kicked 4 conversions and 1 penalty to complete the scoring.

 

The game also saw the welcome return of Luke Stewart, who had starred in Sutton's recent successful seasons as first choice flanker in the 1st XV but he left to join the Royal Marines. Unfortunately his time in the Marines was marred by injury but thankfully he has returned to fitness and is ready to do battle in the green of Sutton rather than the green beret of the military. For his return game the versatile player played in the unfamiliar role of scrum half from where he orchestrated the excellent victory.

 

Sutton 3rd XV;

 

Unfortunately Sutton's injury hit 3rd XV suffered a heavy defeat at the hands of a very strong Luctonians side, who took full advantage of Sutton's problems but sportingly as the host club they did offer players to supplement the Sutton team on the day.

 

Ladies Team;    

 

The Sutton Ladies team enjoyed a pleasant afternoon in the sunshine at the RSG, Walmley Road last Sunday but on the playing side they were out played by a very strong Ladies Team from Wolverhampton, who had the best of the scoresheet.

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