Burntwood RUFC back to winning ways after comeback at Eccleshall

Following two successive league defeats, Burntwood RUFC tinkered with their line-up and the changes worked to good effect away to Eccleshall.

Even so, they had to come back from ten points down to get back to winning ways.

Daryll Organ tries to burst through a challenge. Pic: Joanne Gough

Daryll Organ tries to burst through a challenge. Pic: Joanne Gough

The home side have not had the best of starts to the season and were determined to put things right from the kick off. A forceful start earned them a penalty goal from infront of the posts after just two minutes.

A foray into opposition territory approaching the ten minute mark turned the tide briefly but the home right winger escaped down the touchline to set up a prolonged attack which took play right up to the Burntwood try line.

Excellent defence, with Alan Mapp making a series of big tackles, resisted Eccleshall’s repeated attempts to drive over through their forwards. The danger seemed to be over as Ben Holt’s side forced the error but the hosts improved their lead after 15 minutes.

Scrummage possession was chipped behind the visitors’ defence for the right winger to dot down in the corner. A fine conversion across the wind made it 10-0.

Having weathered the storm, Burntwood hit back to dominate the rest of the half. A good attack on 22 minutes saw the final pass miss the intended target of Tom O’Brien but the hosts had already infringed in midfield and Aza Dunet, making a welcome return from long term injury, slotted the penalty goal.

He was on target again four minutes later after Eccleshall infringed as they tried to run the ball out of their own half, an excellent strike from the home ten metre line bisecting the posts.

Burntwood took the lead after 35 minutes with a scintillating try. Scrum possession on the hosts’ ten metre line was moved left and Owen Rookyard, now operating at full back, hit the line at pace to run clean through to the posts for a try converted by Dunet.

As the half ended the visitors were looking for a second try following Sean Brennan’s line out steal but the scoreline remained 13-10.

David Ward comes under pressure. Pic: Joanne Gough

David Ward comes under pressure. Pic: Joanne Gough

A great run by full back Rookyard on a kick return took play up to the home 22 to open the second period. Eccleshall infringed at the breakdown and Dunet extended the lead with his third penalty goal.

The visitors played good possession rugby but they went down to 14 when Luke Rookyard’s over-eagerness saw him yellow carded for tackling the full back in the air.

Eccleshall were soon in Burntwood territory but Ian Jones came up with a turnover which allowed Craig Seedhouse to clear to halfway.

Seedhouse and Holt were prominent in Burntwood’s next move but possession was finally spilled on the home 22 as play passed the hour mark.

With ten minutes of normal time remaining Eccleshall went close on more than one occasion but good defence and a couple of line out steals eventually cleared the danger.

When they turned a home scrum, Burntwood sealed the win in the closing minutes. Birthday boy Rob Jones and prop Dave Ward almost got over the try line before the Eccleshall No. 4 infringed. Burntwood went for the scrum, only to infringe themselves and allow a kick to touch.

However, Brennan again stole the line out put-in to set the backs in motion. A sweeping move right and then left, with full back Rookyard making a crucial break, was finished off by Darryl Organ with a try in the corner. Dunet’s conversion attempt was close but brought the contest to a conclusion.

The 2nds won by 43-6 at home to Tamworth 3rds whilst the colts came close to toppling league-leaders Malvern on Sunday. They deservedly led 16-10 going into the last five minutes but conceded two late tries and a conversion to go down 22-16. The veterans beat Wednesbury Vets in a Friday night fixture.

This Saturday Burntwood welcome Edwardians to The Sportsway – kick off 2.15 pm. All other fixtures are TBA.

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