Midlands League 2
Kesteven welcomed Matlock to Woodnook for a match which was vital to both teams.
Kesteven needed the points to help them climb the table while Matlock were looking to consolidate their place in the race for promotion .
The home team started well and quickly got into the home 22. A Matlock defender knocked the ball out of scrum half Dingley’s hand and was sent to the sin bin. From the penalty, the ball went towards midfield then spun out right, with the front row union getting the credit. Skipper Gavin Purvis fed a great pass out to Rob Sheardown who stormed over for the try.
Following this Ks looked good. The pack were dominant in scrum and line-out. Turner was movng well but the second try didn’t come.
Matlock did get into the game and after 25 minutes they scored a simple try with a break through the middle. The conversion put the visitors in the lead but it didn’t last long.
Kesteven responded with the best move of the match. Quick ball on half way was workout to Harry Cox who drew the last defender and sent Dave Twddle off on a storming run up the touchline. Tacklers bounced off him as he powered over the line for a great try to give Ks a half time lead of 10-7.
In the second half, Parker added a penalty but this was cancelled out by a similar award to Matlock.
Whittaker had looked very lively in the home back division with a number of good runs, but he was forced to retire with half an hour left to be replaced by Ken Lines.
The home forwards were getting on top and won a number of penalties at the scrum and ultimately they drove the Matlock pack over their own line and the referee awarded a penalty try. Parker converted to open up a 10 point lead with 15 minutes left.
Matlock were stung into action and took play up to the Ketseven line. Rob Sheardown was judged to have killed the ball close to the line and he was sent to the sin bin. Matlock scored from the resultant scrum and the conversion crucially narrowed the gap to three points.
Kesteven now had to hold on for the remaining five minutes. Matlock won the ball at a scrum in their own half and their scrum half broke clear and he was able to score a try in the corner.
This put them ahead by two points with three minutes left. Kesteven tried hard to recover but in the end they were not able to reclaim the match. They were left with only a losing bonus point for their considerable efforts.
Ks have four matches remaining to save their season.
Kesteven: Whittaker, Hughes, Miles, Goodrich, Cox, Parker, Dingley, Cowley, Sheardown, Purvis, Tweddle, Stokes, Armstrong, Woolerton, Turner. Reps: Lines, Pert, Webster.