RUGBY UNION: KENILWORTH Ladies stormed to a 52-10 victory away to Longton on Sunday, with winger Harrie Clemens on hand to finish off six of her side’s ten tries, writes Sophie Freestone.
The victory leaves Kenilworth in second place in the league with 18 points from five matches and puts them just a single point behind table toppers Dudley Kingswinford.
Kenilworth opened the scoring after just five minutes after Longton’s full back was penalised for holding on after some good pressure from Flic Baldwin. Munday took the quick tap penalty and Clemens crossed in the left hand corner.
Kenilworth’s second try came just minutes later after some impressive work at the breakdown from the visitors’ pack. Scrum half Becky Lane dummied and made ground, but was stopped just 5m out, before offloading to Annie Rankin who dived over on the right to give her side a 10-0 lead.
That lead was extended with just 16 minutes played when Clemens was on the receiving end of some good handling to score her second of the afternoon, once again in the left corner.
That try gave the visitors a 15-point advantage with just over quarter of an hour played, and that lead was extended further when Clemens latched onto a kick from Munday to touch down and complete a first half hat trick.
Kenilworth’s forwards put in an impressive shift against the Staffordshire outfit and another strong scrum on the 22 gave their backs some great ball with which to work. Following a run from full back Angeles Rivero, who made good ground, Munday dashed through a gap that she spotted in the defence, breaking through two tackles to score. Her conversion gave Kenilworth a 27-0 lead.
With the first half coming to a close, Clemens scored her fourth try as the visitors took a 32-0 lead into the break.
The second half began and it was once again Clemens who found herself on the score board with the first points of the final forty, before Longton scored their first try of the afternoon to make the score 42-5.
Kenilworth responded, however, with scrum half Becky Lane crossing for her side’s eighth try. Baldwin’s excellent chase of Munday’s kick applied pressure to the Longton defence, allowing her to counter ruck and steal possession. The Kenilworth forwards then played a crucial role in securing the ball at the ruck, before Lane once again found space around the ruck to dash over the line.
Longton took their points tally into double figures with their second try, but Kenilworth were too strong in all areas of the park and finished the match with two further scores to their name.
The first of these came once again from Clemens who tackled one of Longton’s wingers on the hosts’ 5m line, before ripping her of possession and racing across the line.
Siobhan Allison-Moore scored Kenilworth’s final try, after the ball had been secured by some superb work from the forwards. The Longton defence was drawn in, and Allison-Moore broke through the scrambling defence, making the final score 52-10 to Kenilworth.
That result sees Kenilworth continue the strong start to their first season in the league system, with the introduction of regular development fixtures also providing positive signs for the future of ladies rugby at the club.
Kenilworth Ladies are next in action on Sunday when their 1st XV travel to Ashfield for their Junior Cup third round match, before the development side visit Old Northamptonians on Sunday 27th November.