RUGBY:

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Notts, Lincs and Derbys Shield

First round

Kesteven 28

Southwell 17

Kesteven welcomed Southwell to Woodnook looking for a good challenge from the team that finished second in the league last year to win promotion.

The visitors started brightly with a try from their first attack. They worked the ball quickly out to their left wing who beat the defence to go in at the corner.

Kesteven rallied well and were soon able to exert pressure on the Southwell defence, keeping them pinned in their own half. Tom Price was kicking well and from one such kick Dan Turner won a line out close to the Southwell line and, when the ball was fed to the backs, Keiran Taylor ran strongly to the posts, causing Southwell to infringe after the tackle for Tom Price to open the Kesteven account with a penalty.

The rest of the half saw Kesteven on top but without getting over the line. Southwell had few opportunities but on a rare visit to the home half they doubled their score with a replica of the first one, and again their left wing went over in the corner.

This spurred Kesteven on. First Odams was forced into touch just short of the line, before Woolerton showed great strength to battle his way in at the corner – just on the stroke of half tie to narrow the gap to two points.

The second half saw Kesteven turned to face the tricky wind, expecting a tough struggle. They were able to gain the upper hand, however, as the pack began to take control. Price nudged the home side into the lead with a finely judged penalty from 40 metres out.

Some intelligent play from Kesteven saw Price use the touchline well, leading to two quickfire tries by the pack via good line out ball. First Purvis was driven over, then Turner completed the second move with an identical try. Price converted the second to open up a 23-10 advantage.

The game was then held up for 30 minutes up by a serious injury to a Southwell player. When play resumed with 15 minutes left, the Southwell stand off added a well taken try, chipping over the home defence.

The conversion closed the gap to six points with 10 minutes left, before the match concluded with a piece of magic. Olly Wood got possession in midfield and, after a jinking run, he executed an inch perfect cross kick into the hands of Aaron Whittaker who ran in for a great try.

Kesteven: Whittaker, P. Jordan, Taylor, Wood, Cooper, Price, Draper, Odams, Sheardown, Purvis, Pert, Turner, Webster, Armstrong, Woolerton. Reps: Lidstone, Tweddle, Osbourne.

This week Kesteven travel to Boston in their opening league fixture, while the second XV open up against Ashbourne 3rd at Woodnook