First Team Sub
Sep 17, 2011, 6:29 PM
Saturday 17 September 2011
Re: [Feversham Lens] Where are you going - where did you go? RUGBY UNION
Midlands 1 West (Level 6)
Bedworth RFC 20 Whitchurch RFC 27
Admission – free
Programme – “Nah, we’ve only just discovered how to connect up the electricity …”
Refreshments from the bar – ½ Strongbow £1.05, 4 assorted filled soft buns - £4
Attendance – 68 (h/c)
“Beduff” is bigger than you think! Priory Fields is nowhere near the soccer ground but out at Bedworth Heath, easily accessible, though, from the A444 Bedworth bypass. The ground is down Heath Road, left into Smarts Lane, back under the A444, and turn left at the dead-end into a crude gravel car park for around 50 vehicles. Plenty of parking in the road outside.
The only building is a low-slung utilitarian brick clubhouse cum changing rooms, which, rather disconcertingly has a block concrete bunker on the roof. Commanding position for a machine-gun placement, possibly? The clubhouse itself is a gloomy, windowless affair with a small wall-mounted TV and the usual rugby trophies, photos and paraphernalia on display. Outside, there’s 2 pitches, the main one railed all round, and the adjacent floodlit training pitch . There’s also an outdoor bowling club, and, interestingly, a sizeable tarmac circuit for radio-controlled model racing cars, two of which were being put through their paces.
The principal talking point before the match was the whereabouts of the “exchange” referee from the Cheshire society, but he eventually turned up around 25 minutes before the start, There was also a referee’s assessor present, duly miked up to the referee.
Bedworth were promoted via the Midlands 2 West leagues’ second place play-offs last season, and have started in the higher flight, perhaps unsurprisingly, with two defeats. Whitchurch are one of those solid middle-of-the-table sides, but they’ve had their own problems this season as their first league match was called off after a player contracted a dreaded, highly contagious skin disease on holiday – impetigo – and 12 other players went down with it!
The home side started on the defensive but looked pretty solid and although Whitchurch took the lead after 8m with a penalty for a ruck infringement, Bedworth soon pegged them back with a similar penalty on 11m. Their fly-half then put the home side 6-3 in front on 20m with another simple penalty, but Bedworth were nearly caught napping straight from the restart when nobody took responsibility for the high ball and the Whitchurch full back caught it and very nearly broke through. This was only the first of a series of incidents that had the Bedworth coach clutching his head and mouthing imprecations!
Whitchurch equalized on 27m with a long range penalty but 6 minutes later, Bedworth were back in front when their forwards held the ball virtually on the goal-line, the Bedworth scrum-half dummied left to send the defence the wrong way, and No.3 had an easy run through on the right. We were soon back to parity at 13-13 when the Whitchurch No.12 charged down a rather desperate attempted clearance from the Bedworth defence, and chased the ball over the line to score unopposed.
Just before half-time, niggle turned into a serious bout of fisticuffs involving most players – when the dust had settled and the referee had had a long consultation with the assessor, both Bedworth prop forwards and the Whitchurch No.3 were yellow-carded, which meant 10 minutes of uncontested scrums.
Despite being a man less, Bedworth took advantage of a sustained period of pressure after half time and made it 20-13 with a converted try from their full-back. The miscreants were duly summoned back from the sidelines with the Whitchurch No.3, who’d received a bloody lip in the fracas, face-taped and rather resembling Hannibal Lecter ….
On 56m, Whitchurch pulled the scores level again when their full-back fed No.12 who out-ran two defenders to score. 6 minutes later, the Bedworth No.10 missed his first attempt at goal, and on 72m it was Whitchurch who opened up a 27-20 lead when their No.14 chased a through ball, shrugged off the attentions of the home No.11, and scored under the posts. Bedworth kept pressing forward, but eventually ran out of time and thus lost a pretty entertaining match.
(This post was edited by Ostrich on Sep 18, 2011, 12:00 AM)