23rd Jun, 2017

Bright start helps Leamington clinch the double over Earlsdon

Steve Carpenter 15th Mar, 2017 Updated: 16th Mar, 2017

RUGBY UNION: A FIRST half performance of quite sublime rugby by Leamington ensured a convincing 29-19 victory and the double over an Earlsdon side that have proved a tough test in recent years in the Midlands 2 West (South).

On a day when all of the Leamington squad seemed tuned into the same wavelength, the hosts were torn apart, as attacks were launched at them from all quarters.

The positive manner in which Leamington had begun brought its first reward on 13 minutes in not uncommon circumstances.

Skipper Craig Smith claimed lineout ball on the Earlsdon 22 metre boundary and his pack immediately set about a forceful drive. Lewis Kelsey took control and got the all important touchdown. The conversion was slotted over by Tom Jewitt and this was the beginning of a very productive period for the visitors.

Earlsdon were unable to make any impact on the game and were once again left floundering when the alert, Gareth Shuttleworth, picked their pocket with a neat steal, raced away and set Scrum-Half Patch Northover up for the chance of try number two, obligingly converted by the sure-footed, Jewitt.

This was a nightmare start for the home side and things got increasingly worse when they failed to realise the pace of winger Garrett Bell and allowed him to intercept a stray pass and gallop over for try number three, duly finished off by Jewitt once again.

The pattern of play remained unchanged and when Leamington claimed possession from a lineout and set up another drive, the outcome was inevitable. This time, they chose to move the ball inside, to the right and when Toby Bruce sent out a superbly timed pass to Bell, a try was assured.

Leamington had more of a challenge presented to them in the second half, as Earlsdon managed to get some momentum. They opened up the half with a quick break up field, which was halted by the timely intervention of Kenny Kwok.

This new found belief was interrupted as the home side once again found themselves under pressure as Kelsey, Kwok and winger Jamie Anderson mounted a promising attack up the far side flank.

As the second period progressed it was the home side who made the first impact on the scoreboard, courtesy of a penalty try.

Then Kenny Kwok pulled off a stunning head on tackle to bring another Earlsdon attack to a halt and this was quickly followed by some stout defending from Thomas and Luca Illing, to keep the home side at bay.

A Tom Jewitt penalty cooled the situation and although the home side did manage two further, unconverted, tries late on, they were well beaten on the day.