RUGBY UNION: Away defeat for Spalding
Spalding conceded 28 points in the last 10 minutes and missed out on a bonus point in a heavy defeat on Saturday.
At half-time there was not a lot to choose between the two teams with only a nine-point difference.
But in the second period, Spalding were put under the hammer by Rolls Royce as they ran in seven tries.
To Rolls Royce’s credit, they had a game plan of using their effective forwards with driving mauls from lineouts.
They cleared out strongly at the breakdown areas and together with a strong running fly-half to punch holes through failing tackles as the game wore on, Spalding were left in disarray by the end of the match.
In contrast Spalding’s best play came through their backs – scoring three excellent tries – but who, in general, were starved of the ball.
The match started with two rolling mauls threatening Spalding’s try line and only stout defence prevented an opening score for the home team.
Spalding’s response was impressive with the ball being moved quickly along the backs to Gav Sharman on the left wing and with his pace he outstripped his opposite number to score with Willis Ingleby converting.
Rolls Royce came back through the forwards, picking and driving from rucks with good support.
Soon they had a lineout on Spalding’s five-metre line and a simple catch and drive brought the scores level.
Next Spalding won a scrum on the halfway line but instead of passing out through the backs to use their pace, a wasteful kick ahead let Rolls Royce run through missed tackles to take the lead.
Spalding’s kick-off was poor followed by missed tackles again and the home team had rattled up 14 points within a minute.
Rolls Royce were exerting more pressure but Fin Peters intercepted a pass on the halfway line and outpaced the defence to close the gap.
Spalding then had several opportunities to score.
A lineout was won by Ash Anker 10 metres out, maul was established, but as they drove for the line the ball was lost.
Spalding made a break led by the evergreen John Barrett but the final pass with the try line beckoning went astray.
A simple error with the second-half kick-off being short immediately handed possession over to Rolls Royce.
From the scrum they passed out wide down the right-hand side to score.
Again the next score was through their forwards with a catch and drive from a lineout and minutes later from a scrum another score was conceded.
Ingleby lit up the afternoon with a break from his own 22-metre line, outpacing three chasing players down the right wing to score in the corner and he converted.
A bonus point for scoring four tries was on for Spalding, but instead they conceded 28 points in the last 10 minutes.
Inside centre Dan Adams had another outstanding game with his thrusting runs, retention of the ball, tackling and more importantly his leadership of the backs.
But with little possession Spalding’s back three had no ball to run with throughout the second half.
Spalding: Greaves, McClaren, Barrett, Anker, Berry, Cole, Cooke, Steels, W Shields, Ingleby, Sharman, Adams, Crowson, Peters, Douglas. Subs Browne, B Shields, Reid.
MIDLANDS THREE EAST NORTH
Results: Ashby 43 Nottingham Moderns 14, Kesteven v Buxton home walkover, Long Eaton 26 Birstall 31, Mansfield 12 Belper 7, Rolls Royce 66 Spalding 19, Sileby Town 37 Sleaford 32.
Fixtures: Ashby v Rolls Royce, Belper v Nottingham Moderns, Birstall v Mansfield, Buxton v Long Eaton, Grimsby v Kesteven, Spalding v Sileby Town.
MIDLANDS FOUR EAST SOUTH
Results: Aylestone St James 22 St Neots 31, Bedford Swifts 20 Deepings 20, Bourne 23 Brackley 10, Wellingborough OGs v Stamford College Old Boys