North Midlands Colts Cup (Semi Final)
Moseley 40 Worcester 28
The U19 Colts eased their way into the Final of the North Midlands Colts Cup with a victory over Worcester and by doing so kept their season alive.
Worcester kicked off, only for Moseley to gather ball and quickly get back into the Worcester half. They were awarded a penalty which they kicked to touch for a line out just inside the Worcester 22 on the right hand side. The throw was caught but an attempted drive stalled with the ball going to ground. Moseley recycled and passed the ball inside and then out to the left wing for Curtis Wellington. His pace drew the defence and a well timed pass inside to Chris Fensome allowed him enough space to run in to finish of a well worked move, Ben Morgan’s kick being unsuccessful.
Following the restart Moseley had a scrum which the visitors disrupted and won against the head. Carrying the ball into contact Moseley were penalised for off side and Worcester accepted the three points.
Moseley got to their own restart but knocked on. Worcester won the scrum and passed it along the line until kicking for an attempted clearance deep into the Moseley half on the right flank. The ball was safely gathered and came to Ryan Miller whose run outpaced all of the Worcester defence down the left hand side allowing him to cut infield from the 10 metre line and touch down by the posts, Ben Morgan having no trouble with the conversion.
Moseley were obviously in a generous mood, as having gathered the restart they gifted the ball back to Worcester. They put a grubber kick through and got to the Moseley 5 metres, and although Moseley turned the ball over the attempted clearance missed touch. Worcester were soon back up to the line and another penalty from Moseley allowed them to tap and go, and drive over for their first try in the left corner.
A short period of broken play followed which was characterised by Moseley giving away a series of penalties. It was from one of these that Worcester opted to take the points from in front and about 7 metres out, to bring them within one point of the home team.
Worcester knocked on from the restart giving Moseley the scrum which they won under pressure. The ball was passed to the backs and Ben Morgan went, before passing inside to Chris Fensome who was in support. He broke through and was too fast for the covering defenders and scored to the left of the posts giving Morgan a relatively simple kick.
Moseley caught the restart and immediately drove up to half way before the ball went to ground. Quick ball and a couple of phases saw them up to the 22 before Worcester managed a turnover. However an attempted clearance was charged down. The ball bounced free until Hayden Pitt gathered it. Jinking through he evaded at least three defenders and ran in just to the right of the posts, Morgan again making no mistake.
The remaining period was spent between the two 22s. Moseley shaded the possession but were unable to make further inroads until the referee blew for half time, the score reading 26 points to 11 in Moseley’s favour.
Moseley kicked off for the second half and gained a scrum from a Worcester knock on. Another scrum quickly followed which Worcester won against the head. A clearance kick was gathered by Chris Fensome who ran infield before passing inside. Quick handling across the backs fed the ball to Ryan Miller on the right wing. Staying just in field he side stepped and swerved around two Worcester players before running in for a fine finish under the posts with Ben Morgan once more adding the extras.
A period of broken and scrappy play followed, but with the penalty count continuing to mount against Moseley. It was from one of these on half way that Worcester took short and ran. Ben Meadows tackled the ball carrier, but the referee ruled he had not retreated ten metres and showed him a yellow card for his troubles.
Despite being a man down for ten minutes Moseley continued to give as good as they got and prevented Worcester taking advantage of their superior numbers. However after just three minutes of being back to full strength a cheap slap by one of the Moseley front row going into a scrum saw a second yellow card and Moseley a man down once more. The resulting penalty was kicked for a line out which Worcester won. Working the ball over to the right had side they lost the ball forward five metres out, but with Moseley having infringed once more they had another penalty which they tapped and drove over for a converted try.
Moseley were defending as well as they could, but playing a man down for twenty minutes was beginning to take its toll. They were firmly on the back foot and continued to concede penalties. Worcester were enjoying their best passage of play and got the ball over the line only for the referee to judge it to be held up. It was no surprise though when the visitors secured another score in the right hand corner, a difficult conversion chance being missed.
Moseley continued to take the game to Worcester and got up to their 5 metre line but a knock on gave Worcester the scrum. Despite being back to full strength once more Moseley were unable to make any impression and Worcester secured comfortable ball. Breaking through the Moseley line they made their way up field. Some covering tackles slowed the progress a little, but with Moseley continuing to infringe Worcester continued to take short penalties, eventually passing out to the right wing to break through and score. The conversion was missed once more.
With only a couple on minutes left to play Worcester had cut the deficit to just 5 points and a tense finish to the game was in prospect. Moseley, however, had other ideas.
From the restart Ben Meadows out jumped the Worcester team to claim the ball and made a few more metres before going to ground. The Moseley pack were in support and quick ball off the back of the ruck passed inside to the centre and then out to the left wing and back inside again. The ball came to Ryan Miller who broke through the line and then cut inside to score under the posts to give Ben Morgan his easiest kick. It was probably the best try of the afternoon.
Worcester managed one last attack to the 5 metre area but were not able to create anything. The ball became unplayable and the referee blew the whistle for the final time.
Moseley had played some inspired rugby, only spoilt by the high penalty count which nearly cost them dear. Hopefully they can sort that out and will be a tough prospect for who ever they face in the final. That will be the winners of the Bromsgrove – Birmingham & Solihull tie, at a time and venue to be confirmed.
Forwards: P Clark, J Baillie, A Coton, T Short, O Sankey, M Hibbs, H Pitt, B Meadows
Backs: D Brazier, B Morgan, C Wellington, J Jones, J Oliver, R Miller, C Fensome
Replacements: J Lawless Fisher, A Brown, A Yousaf, C Ward, R Dinardo, J McLaren, L Brooks, S Shepherd
Chris Fensome (3 & 20 mins)
Ryan Miller (9, 37 & 69 mins)
Hayden Pitt (23 mins)
Ben Morgan (x 5)
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