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Lichfield RUFC 20 Sutton Coldfield RUFC 36

Lichfield RUFC’s first home game of the season was against local rivals Sutton, who are making a determined push for promotion after several seasons at this level.

Both sides displayed a willingness to play attacking rugby and the early exchanges were very even.

Lichfield struck first in the 12th minute after several phases of play close to the opposition line Mark Rose hit a great line to crash over near the posts, Luke Massey converting to put the Greens 7-0 in front.

In the 17th minute the busy Sutton scrum half scored an opportunist try converted by the fly half to bring the scores level at 7-7.

Massey then struck a penalty to restore Lichfield’s lead to 10-7, however within two minutes Sutton were in front after the opposition winger carved through the home defence to score a converted try and push his side in front at 10-14, the final action of the first half.

The hosts were competing well, Sutton had a man in the bin after repeated infringements, the pack were at least the equal of their opponents and the backs were looking threatening. However within 12 minutes the visitors had scored three tries with Lichfield’s only response being a penalty and the home side found themselves 31-13 down with time running out.

The Myrtle Greens continued to play but the tempo of the game and some indecision in defence was causing them problems. There were two further tries – one for each team – as Dan Rowlands’ effort was converted by Massey to make the final score 36-20.

Lichfield RUFC: Taylor, Gabbitass, Bassett (c), Finnemore, Squire, Burton, Paulson, Thompson; Butler, L Massey, Brown, Adams, Rowlands, Brear, Rose. Subs: Selway, Upton and Sporcic.

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