Longton 48 Malvern 12
Malvern travelled to the Potteries on Saturday hopeful of getting a positive result against a tough and resurgent Longton side. However despite an encouraging first half performance, three injuries to forwards before half time ultimately took their toll and the Staffordshire team used their superior fire power to good advantage in the second half.
Having taken the lead with two scores in the first 10 minutes, Longton looked to be well in control, but Malvern replied by running the ball at the home side at every opportunity, spreading the ball wide for Robin Fransson to run a try in. From the restart, Malvern turned the ball over, the forwards put in some good support work and lock Matt Williams was credited with the try to give Fransson the equalising conversion. Although outweighed in the pack by the big Longton eight, Malvern were moving the ball well, but a penalty saw Longton run the ball upfield and retake the lead with only 19 minutes gone. With Owen Jones , John Clark and Andy Cannock all taking bad knocks before the break and having to be replaced, Malvern did well to contain Longton’s well-drilled side, and nearly squared things after a kick and chase which the home full back just reached first to touch down.
With centre Ryan Watkins coming into the back row as emergency cover for the depleted pack, the second half was going to prove difficult for Malvern up front, and so it proved as Longton ran in three tries in a 10 minute spell. Malvern struggled to gain good possession at the set piece against the heavier Longton unit, but kept them at bay and still tried to probe their defence with what little ball they won. Having shut Longton out for the middle section of the half, the home side could only muster two more scores against a spirited but tiring Malvern side, who can feel that they were hard done by because of the first half injury count. With two tough home games against Scunthorpe and South Leicester in the next two weeks, it’s to be hoped that the walking wounded are quick to recover.
Member since: 10th July 2012
Suzanne Korb was born in Hawaii, raised in the American state of Utah and has been living and writing fiction and non in Malvern for over 11 years.