RUGBY UNION: LOCAL bragging rights went to Southam as they produced a brilliant second half performance to beat rivals Leamington 28-3 in the Midlands 2 West (South) division.
Leamington headed into Saturday’s clash in confidence having recently ran the division’s top two sides to the wire but this time around the produced a disappointing performance.
Energy levels appeared low and the side lacked the cohesion they had shown against both Rugby Lions and Silhillians, however, their performance was perhaps mitigated by the fact that the game itself lacked any pattern and was constantly interrupted by the relentless flow of penalty decisions.
With both the sun and wind in their favour, Leamington began the match in a businesslike fashion and were soon attacking the home defence.
On four minutes they were awarded a penalty, which Tom Jewitt slotted over to give his side the lead. Little did they and their big away support realise that this would be the only time they would trouble the scoreboard during the afternoon.
The writing may have been on the wall when moment’s later, influential prop forward, Scott Peters, was given a yellow card.
Whilst the home side failed to take any advantage of the extra man, it did have the effect of limiting Leamington’s attacking ability.
Despite failing to add to their score, Leamington continued to have the majority of possession in this first period but failure to reap any further reward for their domination came to haunt Leamington, as the home side were awarded a penalty, with the half time whistle due, which they converted to draw the scores level.
Leamington, now playing with a strong, low sun in their eyes, started the second half in positive fashion courtesy of some clever tactical kicking from Tom Jewitt and some strong running from winger Garrett Bell.
However, they conceded a penalty in front of their posts and allowed Southam to kick themselves into the lead.
Even at this early stage of the half, there was little indication of how the game would unfold, although the home side began to set down their marker with some robust scrummaging, which saw the Leamington pack come under intense pressure.
It was under these circumstances that resulted in the first try of the afternoon. Leamington failed to take the ball from their scrum and as Southam built up a head of steam, the visitors were unable to respond and allowed the home side to drive over for the try.
This certainly lifted the home side and although Leamington tried to form a quick reply, they fell to another score, this time converted, which now left them trailing by 15 points.
With the match continually being halted by the Official, Leamington began to lose concentration and allowed the home side the chance for two further scores, before the end of a very disappointing afternoon for lover’s of Sport.