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Home > News > NLD fight back stuns North Midlands
Your News NLD fight back stuns North Midlands

NOTTS, Lincs & Derbyshire staged a stunning second half fightback to beat North Midlands 24-16 in a lively opening match in Midlands Group B of the National Under-20 Championship at a frosty Moseley this evening.

North Midlands, unbeaten in their three warm-up matches, appeared to have laid the foundations for victory when they opened up a 13-0 lead by the interval.

But the Three Counties, losing Midlands finalists last season, were a transformed side after the break and used the Billesley Common slope to their advantage to run in three unanswered tries and clinch victory.

North Midlands were also at their best down the slope as Moseley number eight Rob Young drove over from a second surge after a line out drive and that was followed by a penalty from Newport full-back Liam Holder on the half hour.

A try from lock Jeremy Darley (Harper Adams University) on the stroke of half time appeared to have put North Midlands in control but their lead had been wiped out by the midway point of the second half.

NLD, who had been thwarted by some brave North Midlands defence in the first half, stunned the home side with a ell-taken try from fly-half Jim Wigglesworth (Hull) who latched onto a superbly paced chip from centre Elliott Gwynne (Ilkeston) that bounced kindly on a crispy pitch.

Wigglesworth added the conversion and he struck again after 62 minutes to give NLD the lead after lock Jake Thompson (Ashbourne) drove over for the try.

Wigglesworth capitalised on some slack North Midlands defence by spinning out of two tackles to score his second try under the posts and his conversion left the home side two scores adrift.

Holder reduced the deficit with a penalty six minutes from time but NLD were not to be denied and Wigglesworth wrapped up the scoring with a penalty of his own with the last kick of the match.

Leicestershire will begin their defence of the Midlands title of the National Under-20 Championship with a group A match against East Midlands at Market Harborough on February 1.

National Under 20 Championship Fixtures

Midlands Group A

February 1: Leicestershire v East Midlands at Market Harborough (7.15pm), Cambridge University v Warwickshire at Grange Road (7.30pm).

February 15: East Midlands v Cambridge University at Luton (7.30pm), Warwickshire v Leicestershire at Broadstreet (7.30pm).

February 29: Leicestershire v Cambridge University at South Leicester (7.3opm), Warwickshire v East Midlands at Broadstreet (7.30pm).

Midlands Group B

January 30: North Midlands 16 Notts, Lincs & Derbyshire 24 (at Moseley)

February 29: NLD v Staffordshire at Mansfield (7.30pm)

TBC: Staffordshire v North Midlands

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