Moseley: Hearn; Tucker, Gervais, MacBurnie, Gillick (Brown 40); Thomas O, Glynn (Taylor 64); Warren (Quigley 53), Thomas C, Gadd, Smith, Griffiths, Dew (Spivey 69), Gibbons, Mason (Stott 49). Replacements Sanderson
Plymouth: Nowell; Johns, Mitchell, Lee M (Squire 50), Lewis; Slade (Avery-Wright 78), Farnham (Webber 60); Rogers (Selway 78), Vickers (McGregor 69), Andrew (Mason K 65), Manton (Grace 63), Flashman, Lloyd, Harris, Lee D
Referee: Ross Campbell (RFU)
Moseley: Tries: Gibbons 2, McBurnie; Penalty; Con: Thomas 3; Pen: Thomas
Albion: Tries: Mark Lee 2, Lewis; Cons: Slade 2; Pen: Slade 2
Sin-binned: Harris (Albion) 69
The Birmingham Mail
- by Brian Dick
A spot of homespun wisdom proved the difference as makeshift Moseley opened their British & Irish Cup campaign with a hard-fought victory over Plymouth Albion. A penalty try three minutes from the end saw them complete a sterling second-half comeback, in which they overturned a 13-point deficit by utilising the Billesley slope and the sweeping wind.
With Ollie Thomas kicking both the corners and his goals and the Moseley set-piece growing in dominance, the hosts capitalised on two tries from Sam Gibbons either side of half-time and a score from Callum MacBurnie.
And considering the fact they began the match with eight dual registered players in their line-up and ten players making their first starts, Kevin Maggs was pleased they stuck together and pulled out a victory.
“To come back from 25-12 down and win was fantastic,” the head coach said. “They only had a one-team run on Tuesday night but they all bought into it and put in a lot of effort. “Tom Warren did well in his first game for a long time, Sam Gibbons showed up well and a few of them are not a million miles away.
“But was good to see was some of the experienced guys like Neil Mason and Richard Stott steering the ship. You need that in any side and it probably made the difference in the end.”
Mose needed every ounce of that know-how to see off a Plymouth side that played with uncharacteristic width and cutting edge, and seemed unfazed by the fact they only arrived half-an-hour before kick-off.
That might explain their failure to collect that kick-off, a shortcoming that allowed Mose to set up a catch and drive opportunity from which Nuneaton’s Gibbons was shunted over.Albion levelled ten minutes later when their skilful young fly-half Henry Slade found Mark Lee for the first of his two tries.
Mose responded through MacBurnie just before the midway point after the young centre picked up a loose ball in front of the visitors’ posts and scythed through some flimsy tackling. Thomas converted for 12-5.
Slade narrowed Plymouth’s deficit with a 34th minute penalty and Lee struck again just before half-time after Mose tied themselves in knots trying to deal with a kick to the corner.
Slade added a penalty soon after the restart and when Tyson Lewis skirted around the Mose defence for Albion’s third try after 52 minutes, Maggs’ men looked to have too much to do. But Thomas drove the bus back down the pitch and for the final quarter the home side were camped in Plymouth territory.
Gibbons burst through the fringes on the hour, Thomas converted and added a penalty to make it 25-22. And Moseley then finally hit the front following a sequence of scrums near the Plymouth line that should have resulted in a pushover try for Stott.
However, the ball squirted loose on a couple of occasions until referee Ross Campbell decided the Plymouth pack had prevented a definite score and awarded a penalty try.
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