Newport 1st XV Rugby Match Report Saturday 19th September 2009-09-21 Fixture Kenilworth (AWAY) 3 PM Author Simon Holland “Positive Performance Leaves Newport Short” Kenilworth 19 - Newport 14 Newport travelled to Kenilworth last Saturday for their 3rd match this season in the newly formed and highly competitive „National 3 Midlands‟ League. With the weather proving to be ideally suited to Newport‟s open and exciting game plan, they ran out to a well kept pitch, surrounded by excited supporters aplenty from both towns. The game started as it was to continue - highly paced, with neither side nothing but desperate for the first points. Newport‟s game plan was proving successful in the opening phases, with them retaining possession and winning the territorial battle, seeing them with the ball in hand well into the opposition‟s half. There seemed to be a renewed level of urgency about the team, missing the previous week, but after a sustained period of pressure from the boys, much against the run of play, the Kenilworth backs exploited a gap in defence to go over for the first points – Successfully converted, leaving the score @ 7-0 to the home side. Newport, not phased in the slightest by this score, came right back at the home side, seeing their bigger ball carriers crashing into the Kenilworth defence, drawing in defenders and creating gaps. This culminated with Newport putting some fast phases of play together just outside the Kenilworth 22 metre line, with Ben Warrilow at scrum half moving the ball intelligently until the inevitable – Yet another breach of the gain line with a committed and well angled supporting run from lock Jonny Stiles, saw him crash over for the try which Tomasi Tanumi converted. 20 mins gone with the score line 7-7, and everything to play for. With Newport fired up, they re-started in the same fashion, applying yet more sustained pressure on the home side, with Newport forwards working their way back into the opponent‟s half, producing quality ball going forward – Exactly what they needed to see the back line moving the ball to Tomasi Tanumi, to do what he does best, standing up both centres with a calculated offload to Toby Mann running in at pace, who in turn delivered an impeccable 20 yard pass to the newly signed Rob Clymer who took his chance well to complete the movement putting through Matt Curgenven to go over the line from 30 yards. Tanumi added the conversion to see Newport take a 7 point lead. Newport‟s hopes of finishing the half ahead were dashed when the influential Kenilworth left winger broke through a tackle and offloaded the ball skilfully to see Kenilworth going over in the corner for an unconverted try. Newport lead 14- 12 at the close of the first half. The pace of the first half was matched from the restart, with Newport‟s Adam Faulkner looking dangerous on the left wing and being stopped just yards from the line. After some exciting half breaks from Matt Curgenven at fly half, Rob Clymer had his 2nd big break of the day, running 50 yards, only to be brought down 10 metres from the line with, unfortunately, no support player available so the chance went missing. It was now Kenilworth‟s chance to apply some pressure, seeing Newport camped on their own line, but they kept their discipline and worked hard to produce some great defence resulting in Morgan Sikanen scrapping for the ball and producing one of a number of turnovers. Fresh legs were brought on with Neil Poole replacing Jack Wells at hooker and Adam Stevens replacing Adam Faulkner on the left wing. An offside infringement from Newport saw Kenilworth kicking for goal, but missing, with Newport retaining the lead but not for long. Kenilworth backs put together a smooth move to see a supporting forward going over for the try and leaving Newport trailing 19-14. Despite some last minute chances for Newport, that was to be the final score, seeing Newport clinching a bonus point by losing by less than 7 points – A disappointing end to an exciting display of rugby. Newport hope to build on this performance, facing Kettering for their 2nd home match this season, at home, with a 3pm kick off.
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