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Wednesday 30 January 2013 Updated: 30/01 18:26
Old Leamingtonians 22 Pinley 24
THE HARD work of a 40-strong volunteer force to clear the pitch of snow went unrewarded as OLs slipped to a narrow Midlands Three West (South) defeat which dented their promotion hopes.
A group of OLs members and their families ensured the pitch was in good condition and the fixture was one of just a handful to take place throughout the Midlands on Saturday.
Unfortunately, it was not one of the OLs best performances of the season with the backs not really clicking in their usual speedy way and the momentum of the game being interrupted by far too many stoppages.
Pinley applied the early pressure and they caught the home defence napping to go over for a fifth minute converted try.
OLs fell further behind shortly after when a loose pass was intercepted and Pinley made the most of a two man overlap to double their advantage.
It finally stung OLs into action and the visitors were unable to cope with a spell of concerted pressure which led to a penalty try, converted by Angus Rose, plus the first of five yellow cards being issued to Pinley players.
OLs continued to turn the screw and the ball was quickly fed from a rolling maul to back row Liam Jones who ran round the Pinley defence to score a fine try. Rose added the conversion to level the half time score at 14-14.
OLs pressed the self destruct button early in the second half with another loose pass being intercepted by a visiting player who ran half the length of the pitch to touch down under the posts and leave the simplest of conversions.
OLs responded in fine style by piling on the pressure but they were continually frustrated by a combination of slack play and constant infringements by the visitors.
Rose reduced the arrears by slotting over a penalty and OLs eventually got their noses in front when Jones went over for his second try of the afternoon following a well disciplined maul to secure a slender one point advantage going into the last quarter.
Pinley’s forwards began to assert themselves in the closing stages and the visitors were awarded two penalties.
The first kick failed to hit the target but the second penalty was converted to snatch victory.
OLs will be bidding toi get their promotion push back on track when they visit Cheltenham North this Saturday.
OLs Extras failed in their attempt to reach the Warwickshire 2nd XV Cup final after suffering a 35-7 semi-final defeat at Nuneaton on Sunday.
Nuneaton scored 90 points the last time the two sides met but OLs produced a much more heroic display and were unlucky to be denied an early pushover try.
Nuneaton then got into gear through their fast and skilful threequarters who were instrumental in building up a 30-0 half time lead.
OLs battled bravely and reduced the arrears in the second half thanks to a try from replacement Matt McIntyre which Trevor Davies converted.
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