Druids v Pill Harriers (Away) 21 Sep 2013

13-17 Loss

Druids beaten in Final Minutes

Monmouth Druids travelled to Newport to meet Pill Harriers rfc and expected a tough encounter as their opponents are possible front runners to fight for the league leadership. There was much consternation in the Druids ranks as they suffered from a shortage of players in the front row of the scrum. Also there were numerous other changes in the team which causes problems in continuity.
The first 20 minutes saw the Druids on the offensive as their forwards had the edge over Pill. Pick and drive was particularly effective and from a series of rucks and mauls Second Row Milo Thomas crashed over for Druids first score. Although the conversion kick failed the visitors must have felt confident that another score was possible. So it was, in the form of a 25 metre Penalty goal from Left Wing Matt Tabb.

The Druids were on top now and they almost extended their lead but one of forwards lost possession of the ball in the act of scoring. The half ended with the visitors still in control and optimistic of a victory with an eight point lead.
The start of the second period demonstrated the problems the Druids were suffering at the line out. Because of the lack of understanding between thrower in and catcher much valuable possession was lost and this feature was important to the end result of the game.

Pill scored their first try following the award of a penalty to the home side for a high tackle. The ball was moved through the hand and the right wing touched down in the corner.The conversion failed but this gave Pill a real lift.
They added a second try which started from within their own half. Good passing and running saw the right wing streak over. This was converted to move the home side into a 12-8 lead.

This stung the Druids and there was more purpose and fire in their play. From a scrum close to the half way line, the ball was moved to Jamie Tyler but with one man to beat he was hustled into touch. This lapse was only temporary as the Druids retook the lead with 10 minutes remaining. Good scrummage saw Centre Bomber Wilding dive over to make the score 13-12 in favour of the visitors.
It was not over however as Pill counter attacked from their own 22 metre area. The ball was worked skilfully along the line for the winger to touch down wide out. The difficult conversion hit the cross bar and rebounded away but Pill had achieved a victory by 17-13.

The Druids will be disappointed with this loss as they looked to have snatched an away victory. They achieved a number of individual charges but insufficient organised group options.They had problems in coping with the counter attacks mounted by Pill particularly the running of the Pill fullback and winger.

Everyone retired to the bar for a quiet pint and yes a few noisy ones.

Tries: M.Thomas, G.Wilding
Pen: M.Tabb

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