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Spalding Rugby Club are beaten by Market Bosworth in Counties 1 Midlands East (South)





Spalding went down to a home defeat against high-flying Market Bosworth on Saturday despite a stirring second half fightback.

The Elephants had found themselves trailing 0-21 against their table-topping visitors at half-time in the Counties 1 Midlands East (South) clash.

The league leaders had dominated the first period, hardly letting Spalding out of their own half.

Action from Spalding's home defeat to Market Bosworth on Saturday. Photo: Chris Lowndes
Action from Spalding's home defeat to Market Bosworth on Saturday. Photo: Chris Lowndes
Action from Spalding's home defeat to Market Bosworth on Saturday. Photo: Chris Lowndes
Action from Spalding's home defeat to Market Bosworth on Saturday. Photo: Chris Lowndes
Action from Spalding's home defeat to Market Bosworth on Saturday. Photo: Chris Lowndes
Action from Spalding's home defeat to Market Bosworth on Saturday. Photo: Chris Lowndes

However, Spalding then clawed their way back into the game to score two tries in the second half as they eventually went down to a 12-26 loss.

Earlier in the season Bosworth had run out easy winners at their ground by 46-17 despite a fairly even first half.

As both teams ran out at Centenary Park on Saturday with the pitch still fairly saturated from the recent heavy rains, Spalding knew it would be a tough afternoon and so it turned out to be.

Spalding kicked off with a slight wind advantage but Bosworth had soon worked their way back upfield to threaten the try line.

Initial good tackles by Spalding kept the visitors at bay but their six foot seven inches prop, weighing more than 23 stone, charged the try line with support and, with a simple conversion, the visitors were seven points up after six minutes.

Bosworth's confidence was high with Spalding kicking for territory to relieve pressure but failing to find the sidelines.

Action from Spalding's home defeat to Market Bosworth on Saturday. Photo: Chris Lowndes
Action from Spalding's home defeat to Market Bosworth on Saturday. Photo: Chris Lowndes
Action from Spalding's home defeat to Market Bosworth on Saturday. Photo: Chris Lowndes
Action from Spalding's home defeat to Market Bosworth on Saturday. Photo: Chris Lowndes
Action from Spalding's home defeat to Market Bosworth on Saturday. Photo: Chris Lowndes
Action from Spalding's home defeat to Market Bosworth on Saturday. Photo: Chris Lowndes

The ball was run straight back by Bosworth's tricky full-back and, on the quarter of an hour mark from a ruck ten metres out, the ball flowed along their backs and the outside centre with a strong run cut through Spalding’s defence. With the try being converted, a 14-point lead had been established.

Spalding were coming under constant pressure, giving away a number of penalties at the breakdown, with Bosworth opting to kick for line-outs.

But through a combination of excellent jumps by Will Shields and George Douglas possession was stolen, knocked on or a turnover for dipping into the tackle.

A positive for Spalding was the work that their pack put in at the scrum against a big opposition side with the front row of Sam Cowell, Miguel Da Silva and Luke Turner supported by locks Douglas and Zokas Raimondas holding their own.

This gave number eight Ash Anker time to control the ball and for scrum half Adam Sutcliffe to get his pass away.

But, with half-time approaching, Bosworth were again encamped on Spalding's try line and their forwards drove over the line under the posts for a converted try.

Action from Spalding's home defeat to Market Bosworth on Saturday. Photo: Chris Lowndes
Action from Spalding's home defeat to Market Bosworth on Saturday. Photo: Chris Lowndes
Action from Spalding's home defeat to Market Bosworth on Saturday. Photo: Chris Lowndes
Action from Spalding's home defeat to Market Bosworth on Saturday. Photo: Chris Lowndes
Action from Spalding's home defeat to Market Bosworth on Saturday. Photo: Chris Lowndes
Action from Spalding's home defeat to Market Bosworth on Saturday. Photo: Chris Lowndes

Having put in a big shift, Raimondas was replaced by Sam Noble but, with a Bosworth ball carrier dipping into him as he tackled a scrum, a penalty was conceded.

The gain line was again breached by the outside centre, cutting through Spalding’s defence to score an unconverted try.

Spalding brought on substitutes Henry Duce, who slotted in at fly half, and Macaulay Crane into the pack and both made instant impacts.

Crane, with a couple of big carries, set up ruck advantage and Duce, with a couple of runs over the gain line, gave his forwards valuable yards gained and possession.

Additionally Raimondas was back off the substitutes bench for Noble and Spalding now had the Bosworth scrum under pressure.

Deep inside Bosworth territory and the ball being moved swiftly along the backs, a grubber kick through by Connell Mason saw Gav Sharman score out wide with 13 minutes remaining.

Action from Spalding's home defeat to Market Bosworth on Saturday. Photo: Chris Lowndes
Action from Spalding's home defeat to Market Bosworth on Saturday. Photo: Chris Lowndes
Action from Spalding's home defeat to Market Bosworth on Saturday. Photo: Chris Lowndes
Action from Spalding's home defeat to Market Bosworth on Saturday. Photo: Chris Lowndes
Action from Spalding's home defeat to Market Bosworth on Saturday. Photo: Chris Lowndes
Action from Spalding's home defeat to Market Bosworth on Saturday. Photo: Chris Lowndes
Action from Spalding's home defeat to Market Bosworth on Saturday. Photo: Chris Lowndes
Action from Spalding's home defeat to Market Bosworth on Saturday. Photo: Chris Lowndes

A feature of Spalding's revival was the counter-attack running by full-back Ed Booth and, with his pace making 40 to 50 metres with every run and with support play, valuable pressure was being mounted on Bosworth.

A 50-22 kick by Spalding gave them a lineout won by Douglas and the forwards started to use a driving maul towards the try line.

Although stopped, the ball was recycled to Raimondas who drove powerfully for the try line which was successfully converted by Mason.

Spalding's second half performance featured far better teamwork, good carries by the forwards and penetrating runs with ball in hand by the backs on which to build for the remaining league season.

Their next league match is on Saturday, March 16, when they travel to Vipers.

Spalding: Sam Cowell, Miguel Da Silva, Luke Turner, George Douglas, Zokas Raimondas, Jim Wraith, Will Shields, Ash Anker, Adam Sutcliffe, Willis Ingleby, Ben Shields, Conall Mason, Gav Sharman, Samuel Christie, Ed Booth. Subs: Sam Noble, Macaulay Crane, Henry Duce.



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