Worcester Wanderers 34 - 17 Kenilworth

Last Updated: Nov 29, 2016 06:03pm
Kenilworth, Warwick
By Bruce Doe
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Kenilworth travelled to fellow strugglers Worcester Wanderers on Saturday playing in the shadows of the Worcester Warriors Stadium at Sixways.  The Kenilworth side had experienced a very difficult week as more and more players were added to the already long injury list making selection of the side, particularly forwards, extremely difficult. However it was a very willing and competitive team that took to the pitch on the day in the hope that much needed points could be gained. From the start Kenilworth worked extremely hard at the breakdown and tackled with determination. Unfortunately the ball they won in the loose was slow coming back so the backs often found themselves with little room to operate with opposition forwards up quickly. Kenilworth won the majority of their line-outs but struggled throughout in the scrum, often being pushed off the ball, struggling to channel and pick up ball won or conceding resultant penalties.

Most of the early play was in the Kenilworth half and Kenilworth defended stoutly conceding only a penalty in the first 15 minutes. However Worcester’s pressure told eventually as they crossed close to the posts to score a converted try. Kenilworth got themselves almost immediately back into the game when a number of phases took them to just within the opposition 22. Showing real awareness standoff Jamie Mapletoft kicked low and hard behind the opposition defence to allow Josh Hickman to collect and dive over for a well worked but unconverted try.

Play returned almost immediately to the Kenilworth half with Worcester taking advantage of the struggling  Kenilworth pack and whilst Kenilworth defended bravely it was only a matter of time when another try was conceded leaving Kenilworth 15 points to 5 down. However just prior to half time Kenilworth centre Lloyd Randall intercepted a long Worcester pass to run half the length of the pitch to score under the posts. Hickman added the 2 points leaving his side well in touch at 15 to 12 down.

The second half resumed with Kenilworth again finding themselves defending a more cohesive and strong running side and in due course a further converted try was conceded taking Worcester 10 points clear at 22 – 12. Not long after, a returning Matt Gibson, was given 10 minutes in the sin bin, somewhat unfairly, for apparently pushing a Worcester player. Being down to 14 men only served to fire up the Kenilworth side who immediately went on the attack putting considerable pressure on the opposition defence who eventually were pushed back to their own line by a number of Kenilworth phases before the ball was spun out wide for Mapletoft to cross in the corner. Hickman’s conversion attempt unfortunately hitting the post.  At only 5 points adrift there was real hope that Kenilworth would get something out of the game. Such hope disappeared almost immediately as a reckless attempt to run the ball out of defence resulted in a misjudged long pass being intercepted on the bounce allowing Worcester to score easily near the posts. Unfortunately a similar score was conceded when another misjudged pass on the halfway line was gathered by Worcester who three or four phases later scored their fourth and bonus point try. The final whistle being blown only a few moments later with the final score 34 -17 to Worcester.

Although with a considerably weakened team, particularly up front, much credit should go to the players for their effort and commitment throughout the game. However loose passes directly resulted in at least two of Worcester’s 4 tries – but for that Kenilworth lost a game that could have been won.

Next up is Moseley Oak away on 3rd Dec.


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