Stamford V Newark in Welland Trophy
Advantage Newark in Welland Trophy
Advantage Newark in Welland Trophy
It is advantage to Newark Colts in the three match Welland Trophy as they romped to victory against a spirited Stamford side at Fortress Kelham Road, running in seven tries to entertain a bumper Sunday crowd on an excellent weekend for the club.
Stamford started the brighter of the two sides with a clear forward power game plan that saw them dominate both territory and possession in the early stages. Excellent defence by the home side, with a much improved line speed in midfield and tag team tackling by the forwards ensured that Stamford were not able to convert their early superiority into points, and with their back row stifling quick ball for Newark, the first quarter remained scoreless. A stoppage in play allowed Boss Hogg’s trusty forward coach to instil some structure and steel into their breakdown play so that he ruck inspectors were replaced by a dynamic menacing machine, and Toby Jug-Taylor came on at scrum half, and this reaped immediate dividends as Newark’s ubiquitous James Brogden popped up in the centre to deftly put away the real centre, the excellent Joe Burns under the posts. The altitudinous NLD player Max Hubbard was so leisurely with his kick that Stamford’s prop was able to snatch the ball from the tee and deny Newark the conversion in a moment of levity in an otherwise fiercely contested game. This seemed to settle the home side and for the rest of the first half they dominated the game and played some more structured rugby, building the pressure through the phases and releasing their dangerous backs. From one such multi-phase play and exquisite passing that saw the rumbustious powerhouse winger Robbie Kelly held up just shy of the line but Brogden, unusually at the coal face, was able to gather and sneak over for the try. Hubbard languidly stroked over from the tee. Just before the stroke of half time a canny offload out of the tackle by Burns, in coruscating form throughout put Taylor over the whitewash. Hubbard’s now trusty right boot stretched the lead to 19-0 by half time.
The start of the second half mirror the first as Stamford re-grouped and came out firing. An amazing bit of trickery by their fly half saw the visitors reduce the deficit as he palmed a pass onto the ground and fly hacked it through to score under the posts, leaving an easy conversion to bring the score back to 19-7. Worse was to follow for the home side as Jack Shine was sent to the bin for repeated infringement by Newark, but this seemed to galvanise the home side as they proceeded to knock Stamford out of the rucks time and again and following a sweeping passage of play in which the forwards and backs integrated seamlessly Taylor dived over in the corner. Still with only 14 on the pitch Burns orchestrated play as his side won phases after phase he threw an outrageous dummy to wrong foot the statuesque Stamford rear-guard and cross the line unopposed. Hubbard added to his morning’s tally. Despite the game being over as a contest, the away team continued to show ambition, running the ball from their own line, but they fell asleep as Brogden barged his way over from a quickly taken penalty, but with the kick sailing wide of the uprights, the score remained at 36-7. Stamford made once last foray into enemy territory , but a crunching tackle by iron man James Harding saw them cough up the ball and a cavalry charge upfield saw skipper James Stimson ending a 95m play to score the last of the tries. Hubbard completed the scoring as he slotted the extras.
Newark travel to Stamford in November for second in the Welland series, but next up are the Nottinghamshire sleeping giants, Mellish, under the lights on Friday at Kelham Road.
Written by Nick Law
Checked by Steve Hogg
Posted by Mick Barton