RUGBY UNION: A TRIO of late tries helped Kenilworth earn a crucial bonus point as they suffered a heavy defeat away to Malvern, writes Sophie Freestone.
The visitors found themselves three points down inside the opening ten minutes after former Gloucester full back Rob Cook opened the scoring for Malvern with a simple penalty from in front of the posts.
Kenilworth responded with a period of sustained pressure inside Malvern’s 22, but the attack was to no avail.
Instead, having staved off pressure from Kenilworth, Malvern responded with their first try of the afternoon when Sam Parson passed to Cook in space whose kick was collected by Tom Hale who crossed the line.
Cook’s conversion added the extras for a 10-0 lead.
This lead soon became 17-0 with 17 minutes on the clock when scrum half George Parsons kept pace with Luke Milton to be on hand for his side’s second converted try of the afternoon.
Though they trailed by 17 points, Kenilworth were determined to get on the scoreboard.
And they did just that when scrum half Gareth Renowden touched down on 19 minutes.
A penalty kick just before the half time break helped extend Malvern’s lead as the resulting line-out saw Glen Potter touch down for Malvern’s third converted try to hand the home side a 24-5 lead at half time.
With Malvern holding a comfortable lead as the second half got underway, it didn’t take them long to secure the four-try bonus point when George Parsons scored his second of the afternoon.
Malvern’s position was further strengthened when Hale scored a quick-fire hat-trick to hand the hosts a commanding 50-5 lead after 55 minutes.
Their eighth try of the match came on 60 minutes when Adam Dixon was on hand to run in on the right of the posts.
Although the visitors found themselves more than fifty points behind, their spirits didn’t drop and they were rewarded in the final 20 minutes with three tries to secure an all-important bonus point. Ed Hannam, who had an excellent game on the wing, was on hand to score in the right corner after his side played with some real intent to breach the Malvern line for the second time.
Thompson then went from try converter to try scorer as he crossed the whitewash with ten minutes to play.
Having applied signifiant pressure in the Malvern 22, Kenilworth’s efforts came to fruition when Ed Hannam scored his second of the match by diving over the top of the ruck to score, securing the bonus point.
The defeat leaves Kenilworth in fifth place on six points after two matches, with their next fixture taking place against Nuneaton Old Edwardians at Glasshouse Lane on Saturday.