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Match Report

By Martyn Gorse,

Wessex Wyverns RFC Vs King’s Cross Steelers 3rd XV

Millbrook RFC, Saturday February 28th 2015

It was a wet and windy morning that welcomed the team from East London to Southampton. Rain overnight left the grounds of Millbrook RFC wet and muddy but playable.

A larger Wyverns team took to the field as we were bolstered by a much deeper bench than in our last match so confidence was high as the game began.

The Steelers held the Wyverns to the middle of the pitch for most of the first quarter with neither side making any significant progress in terms of territory and both teams defences holding up well. However towards the end of the first quarter, a long kick from the Wyverns number 9, Bob N, was recovered by him further down the pitch and he ran over the line to break the deadlock. The conversion was missed and Wyverns led 5-0.

Wyverns had a greater share of the ball in the second quarter of the game and spent more time in the opposition half. The pressure resulted in a penalty in front of the posts but unfortunately the game was delayed as Wyvern's subsitutue Ali Butcher recieved treatment for a dislocated shoulder. He went off the pitch to a round of applause from both sides and the penalty kick was taken by Bob N who calmly slotted the ball over to extend the Wyvern lead to 8-0. Play moved back towards the middle of the pitch and Steelers put the pressure on. The ball was played out to their backs and a gap in the Wyverns' defence was briefly exposed but it was enough for the Steelers to break through score to make the game 8-5.

Wyverns hit back though and consistent pressure from the forwards paid off as Number 8, Andrew Lewis, managed to push his way through the Steelers' defence and score in the corner, skillfully placing the ball down a split second before being sent into touch. The half ended 13-5 to the Wyverns.

As the second half started Wyverns started to show some dominance against their opposition and camped out for some time inside the Steelers' 22 metre line. A penalty conceded by the Steelers was taken quickly by Andrew Lewis who bundled over the line, however the referee called play back as Lewis had been a little too keen and set off before the ref was ready. Another quick run was made but again the ref called Wyverns back. The pressure continued, however, and a maul was taken over the line and Prop, Tony Elias, grounded the ball to make the score 18-5.

The fourth quarter saw another delay as another injury occurred - this time a Steeler found himself on the floor. The delay in play came at a time when Steelers were exerting some pressure on The Wyverns but as play restarted Wyverns retook control. In the last few minutes the pressure was ramped up again and Fly Half, Kev Morgan, ran at the Steelers defensive line. The Steelers got to him but Kev ran the last 15 metres with opposition players hanging off every limb and managed to cross the line and ground the ball in an incredible show of will to make it 23-5. Shortly after this the final whistle blew on a second successive Wyverns win.

While the game was slightly marred by a couple of injuries, it was a great showing from the Wyverns and a real team effort as every substitute was used and 4 tries were scored from 4 different players.

The Wyverns named Full Back, James Firmin as man of the match following several impressive runs and general consistent play at the back. The Steelers named Tighthead Prop, Tony Elias, as their Wyvern of the match after his powerful performance and his try in the second half.

Wyverns 23 - 5 Steelers

Try: Rob N

Pen: Rob N

Try: Andrew Lewis

Try: Tony Elias

Try: Kevin Morgan

Wyverns side:

1. Geoff Stevens

2. Steve Lock

3. Tony Elias

4. Gary Mitcheson

5. Martyn Gorse

6. Simon Fullick

7. Scott Sumner

8. Andrew Lewis

9. Rob N.

10. Kevin Morgan (C)

11. Daniel White

12. Nick Vaux

13. Martyn Green

14. Craig Evans

15. James Firmin


16. Mark Makeman

17. Diego Dominguez

18. Ali Butcher

19. Steve Digweed

20. Lee Barker

21. Chas Brickland

22. Joe Michel

23. Callum

Picture by: Patrick Hughes

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