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Home > News > Last ditch North sink South West U18 in Divisional Festival
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Your News Last ditch North sink South West U18 in Divisional Festival

A last-ditch penalty from the North centre Mike Haley saw the South West U18 side crash to the narrowest of defeats, 32-31, in their opening game of the RFU’s 2012 National Divisional U18 Festival at Broadstreet RFC, Coventry, this evening (Fri. 17).

In a highly entertaining match, that see-sawed in both teams favour, the South West led 31-22 before lock Oli Parkinson’s second try of the match along with the boot of Myerscough College centre Haley sealed the South West’s fate.

As the South West’s team manager David Penberthy commented: “We’re obviously disappointed to have lost and we thought we had done enough at the time.

“While we need to look at our defence, we did look dangerous when we got the ball, so there’s a bit of work to do over the next 48 hours if we are to come back stronger.”

The South West edged in front courtesy of fly half Dave Buck’s only penalty kick of the match and were 10-0 in front soon after when some fine back play was well rounded off by one of the South West’s men of the match and wing Zach Maiden.

While the North stormed back with two tries from Leeds Carnegie scrum-half Matt Dudman, the second of which was converted by fly half Bruce Clegg, plus one from flanker Liam Riley to lead 17-10, it was the South West who finished the opening half the strongest.

And, they had done enough to square the game at 17-17 by the break after a brilliant solo effort from full back Tom Bellack saw him carve his way over from the halfway line for the touchdown and converted by Buck.

While the South West had slipped behind once gain after the break, when Sedgley Park lock Oliver Parkinson crashed over, they, once again, responded with two tries of their own to lead 31-22.

The first came from a penalty kick to the corner with lock Joe Joyce taking well at the line-out to set up a sparkling backs move finished off by Maiden, cutting inside and beating the cover defence for his second touchdown.

And, vice-captain and flanker Adam Peters grabbed the South West’s fourth try having broken several tackles on his way to the line and to provide Buck with his fourth conversion and a 100% kicking success rate.

Back stormed the North yet again and, this time, set up Parkinson for his second try, converted by Haley who finally broke the South West’s heart with his 30 metre penalty kick that soared between the posts to end the match.

The Divisional Festival continues at Broadstreet on Sunday February 19 when the Midlands play the North at 11am followed by London & SE v South West at 1pm.

Preparations will then intensify for the England Under-18 Clubs and Schools international against Ireland Under 18 Clubs in Northwood on April 14.

The England squad will play warm-up matches against Northampton Saints Aacdemy at Surrey Sports Park on March 11 and Leicester Tigers Academy at Oval Park in Wigston on April 8.

South West U18 Division - Tom Bellack (Somerset); Linford Brock (Devon), Henry Purdey (Oxon), Sam Hanks (Somerset), Zack Maiden (Bucks); David Buck (Dorset&Wilts), Henry Taylor (Bucks – c); Max Folkard (Dorset&Wilts), Josh Sargent (Devon), Dan Keat (Dorset&Wilts); Joe Joyce (Somerset), Elliott Moss (Bucks); Tom Lawday (Dorset & Wilts), Adam Peters (Bucks – v/c), Will Eversfield (Berks). Reps:- Ed Hoadley (Berks), Jamie Tolan (Berks), Charlie Pounds (Dorset&Wilts), Tom White (Devon), Will Taverner (Devon), Neil Broadbank (Cornwall), Dylan Teasdale (Oxon), Tiff Eden (Gloucs).

Sunday 19th – London & South East v South West – kick-off 1pm.

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