SPALDING RFC: Bad break mars thrilling draw

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Wellingborough RFC 1st 27 Spalding RFC 1st 27: A HORRIFIC broken leg suffered by a Wellingborough player marred this thrilling Midlands One East draw on Saturday.

The game was held up for 45 minutes after the unfortunate first-half incident, with the home player taken away in an ambulance.

Town will be disappointed to take only a share of the spoils though, having led 27-8 at half-time.

Spalding were playing against a considerable slope in the first period.

It wasn’t long before a Wellingborough winger went over in the corner for the first try after only five minutes of play. The conversion failed, but the home side further increased their lead from a penalty soon after.

Spalding soon found their feet though, with Mark Haighton going over the line for their first try. Phillips made the conversion to put Town just one point behind.

Quick handling by the Spalding three-quarters then resulted in winger Phillips going over for his first try, but he was not so successful with the conversion.

The away side were now starting to dominate, but the nasty injury brought proceedings to an untimely halt.

However, three minutes after the re-start, Spalding went over the line again. This time a break in the centre went wide to Phillips, who created space before passing inside for Dave Hankinson to score. Phillips again missed the kick.

Soon after Town were awarded a penalty close to the posts. This time Hankinson stepped up – and he extended the away lead.

The final move of the extended first half again saw the Spalding back line break from their own half to feed winger Phillips, who touched down for his side’s fourth try.

Hankinson converted to make it 27-8 to Town at the break.

It was all change after the interval though. Within three minutes of the re-start Spalding had a kick charged down and the Wellingborough winger was over for an unconverted try.

Ten minutes later the hosts were awarded a penalty and they kicked for the corner.

They won the ball on their own throw in and drove for the line and scored. The conversion was successful to make the score 27-20 in Spalding’s favour.

With only ten minutes of the match remaining Wellingborough were again forcing their opponents to defend.

A missed tackle by Spalding led to another home try, with the conversion levelling the scores at 27-27.

It wasn’t all doom and gloom for Spalding though, as each side received three points, two for a draw and one for scoring four tries. That sees them stay 11th in the standings.

Town: Harry Sharman (captain), Peter Shakespeare, Craig Dowse, Andy Branton, Mark Haighton, Joel Riddle, Ed Duerden, Phil Taylor, Rob Lucas, Dave Hankinson, Tim Smith, Adam McHugh, Sion Williams, Ollie Phillips, Ben Williamson, Jimmy Rowlands, Harry Brown, Tom Duerden.

Saturday - Spalding v Syston (3pm).