Kenilworth’s six-try salvo comes far too late to repair first-half damage

Kenilworth scrum-half Alex Selby oversees the scrum. Picture: Sophie Freestone
Kenilworth scrum-half Alex Selby oversees the scrum. Picture: Sophie Freestone
  • Midlands One West
  • Bournville 66 Kenilworth 39

After finding themselves 40-3 down at the interval, Kenilworth scored six second-half tries to salvage some pride and earn a valuable bonus point, writes Sophie Freestone.

Bournville were quickly on the attack but Kenilworth held firm until the tenth minute when a lineout was driven deep into their 22, allowing full-back Tom Jarvis an easy run in for the first try of the match.

The conversion gave the hosts a seven-point lead.

Kenilworth responded six minutes later with a successful penalty from fly-half Josh Hickman before Bournville capitalised on a loose ball to cross the whitewash and extend their lead to 12-3 with 20 minutes played.

The visitors were then unfortunate not to get a penalty for a very high tackle on Ed Hannam before a late tackle from Hickman resulted in a yellow card for the Kenilworth stand-off.

In the final 12 minutes of the half, Bournville made the most of their man advantage by scoring four unanswered converted tries, securing the bonus point in the process, to extend their lead to 40-3 at the break.

Despite the large deficit, Kenilworth never gave up and scored the first of their six-try second-half salvo through replacement Will Blundell who burst through the Bournville defence to touch down.

Bournville then extended their lead with a converted try on the left to make the score 47-10 with half an hour remaining.

It was then Bournville’s turn to be reduced to 14 men and Kenilworth were quick to capitalise, with number eight Calum Goodfellow barrelling over on the left.

The conversion was wide.

A third try soon followed after a clever kick over the defence from scrum-half Alex Selby and some handy footwork from Joe Jepps in the Bournville 22 saw the winger cross the whitewash.

The conversion was again off target.

Despite having a man in the sin-bin, Bournville extended their lead with 15 minutes remaining, their winger crossing for a converted try.

With victory out of Kenilworth’s reach at this stage, the bonus point for scoring four tries was their main focus.

It was quickly secured after a fine run up the left wing from Rhys Jones, who then produced a timely pass for full-back Jamie Mapletoft to cross in the corner.

The difficult conversion was just wide of the mark to leave the score 54-25 with just under 15 minutes left to play.

After an action-packed 70 minutes, the tryscoring was still not over.

A ninth try from Bournville, again converted, took the score out to 61-25 before Hickman broke the line inside the Bournville 22 to touch the ball down at the base of the posts.

The simple conversion reduced the deficit to 29 points before the home side’s tenth and final try of the afternoon took their tally to 66 points.

As the match approached 80 minutes, Hickman made a fantastic interception from inside his own half to score the 16th try of a breathless afternoon, touching down under the posts to make the conversion a formality.