Kesteven record first victory of the season
Midlands 3 East (North)
Rolls Royce 0
Kesteven got the first win of the season under their belt against Rolls Royce, tries from Aaron Whittaker and Harry Cox, as well as a penalty from Dan Halliday, sealing the win for the home side.
Ks were in need of the right result after last week's disappointing outing away to Nottingham Moderns. Gavin Purvis captained the side.
Ks immediately looked to enforce their game plan, with numerous forward plays to work their way upfield. Their hard work paid dividends, as good hands from the half backs and centres allowed Whittaker to use his pace to beat covering defenders on the outside, dotting down in the corner. Will Cann’s conversion effort faded just wide, but from here, the men in black looked to push on
For the majority of the game, both sides struggled to find sustainable momentum. Unforced errors crept into the game and possession changed hands frequently. Territory was shared, however both sides couldn’t quite capitalise on field position at the pivotal time.
Both sides encountered injuries, with Whittaker going off with a swollen ankle.
The second half restarted and the familiar pattern of the game returned. It took till midway through the second half for Kesteven to further their advantage. Halliday struck a penalty from around the 10m line in midfield to take the hosts into an eight point lead.
From here, Ks recognised Rolls Royce’s tight defensive structure. A smart kick in behind from the returning Cann put the Rolls Royce set-piece under pressure.
A neat line-out steal from Rob Sheardown placed Ks in midfield. A few phases later, having recognised the overlap, K shifted the ball out to Harry Cox who beat two defenders to cross over for Kesteven’s second score of the day. Halliday’s shot at the posts drifted away.
The minutes turned to seconds and scrum-half Ben Adlesee kicked the ball out into touch to claim Kesteven’s first win of the season in front of a rapturous home crowd.
Ks played with effective attacking structure and brute physicality. But their resolute defence was testament to the victory and, in the end, this was the difference between the two outfits. The man of the match was number eight Charlie Pirie.
The win sees Kesteven move up to eighth from 11th in the table, and they return to action next Saturday, away to Sleaford.
Kesteven: Whittaker, Miles, Goodrich, Cann, Cox, Price, Adlesee, Stedman, Tito-Xipu, Purvis, Sheardown, Pert, Webster, Armstrong, Pirie. Subs: Hanson, Fuller, Halliday,
Notts Pennant League 2
Kesteven 2nd 33
Derby 3rd 10
Kesteven hosted Derby looking to build on their strong win from the previous week against Moderns.
The team was the usual blend of youth and experience, with Conor Bennett making his debut.
Derby made a strong start to the game with a series of strong mauls and tight play up front. This resulted in them going in for the opening score, with the conversion missed.
Kesteven came back and started to get on top for the remainder of the half. Sam Green scored in the corner, following a strong run from Warden and an excellent off-load from Fuller. Birthday boy Josh Udom then finished a great try, turning his opposite man inside out (literally).
The half was finished with a try for James Bennett after a good run and pass from Henry Parker. Parker Snr converted two from three to leave the half time score 19-5.
Derby can back strongly in the second half and scored a great try of their own with several off-loads and support runners leaving their full back to score in the corner.
At this point, the game could have gone either way, but a second try for Green took the game away from Derby and Udom sealed the win with his second under the posts. Both were converted to leave the final score 33-10 to Kesteven.
Kesteven: J. Bennett, Betts, Odams, Bailey, Waters, Windsor, Warden, Fuller, Dent, M. Parker, H. Parker, Jordan, C. Bennett, Green, Udom. Subs: Stanton, Norsworthy, Charles
NLD Colts League
Kesteven Colts' opening match of the season ended in disappointment as Mellish ran out winners by 10 points.
The blustery conditions proved challenging for both sides, and two tries from Jamie Scott and Harry Clough weren’t enough. Henry Parker captained the side.
The opening exchanges saw both sides trying find their feet. Mellish were more effective up front, able to beat the first Kesteven defender and get over the gain line.
They raced into an early lead thanks to a continued forward carries to bash their way over the whitewash. The conversion was added, and Ks got a taste of the Mellish game plan.
Mellish looked to extend their lead through a penalty, but the kick drifted just wide. From here, Ben Whinney kicked downfield from the 22 restart, mid-way into Mellish half.
A smart line-out steal from the Ks pack placed them in a strong field position. Colts debutant scrum-half Harry Clough used his quick feet to dazzle his way past the Mellish defensive line. Whinney added the extras and Ks went level.
Kesteven gained momentum and looked to turn the screw on their hosts. The away side moved downfield patiently.
A brilliant steal in contact from Henry Parker meant Ks had an overlap and quick hands from the backs gave Jamie Scott his first score of the season, diving over in the corner. The tricky wind hindered kicking ability, and Whinney couldn’t add the conversion. Ks went into half time five points to the good.
In the second period, the lead changed hands regularly. Kesteven lacked defensive physicality and were punished for this. Mellish drove their way upfield and made their way over the line for a converted try.
But it was Kesteven who would score next, in similar fashion to Mellish, however it was winger Jamie Scott who got his second. The wind pulled Whinney’s kick wide, but Ks were back into a three point lead.
But Mellish went on, scoring two tries on relatively quick succession. Ks couldn’t gain any momentum, and a Harry Norsworthy yellow card epitomised Ks in the latter stages of the second half. This was followed swiftly by a home penalty to put the game to bed.
The Colts are scheduled to go again this weekend at home to Sleaford, but this may be subject to change.
Kesteven: Whinney, Archer, Cox, Lowe, Scott, Parker, Clough, Mendham, Tapson, Stanton, Hind, Johnson, Eagle, Moore, Bailey.
More by this authorJohn Burgess