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Home > News > London Welsh 21 Coventry 23 29th November 2008
Your News London Welsh 21 Coventry 23 29th November 2008

London Welsh 21 Coventry 23

Written by John Butler

As finishes go, they donít come much more exciting than this one! Coventryís ultimate hero was Aussie fly half Myles Dorrian who, five minutes into injury time coolly slotted a 24 metre drop goal in what turned out to be the final action of a match which saw the lead change hands six times.

When Welsh replacement fly half Aled Thomas landed a 35 metre penalty one minute into injury time for 21-20 it looked all up for Cov. In reality had that score line remained the result would have been just a little harsh on the 19 heroes that took the field. It was a performance so different from Exeter seven days earlier.

Taken to task for not producing again against one of the Divisionís top four, on this occasion Welsh, fourth in the table really knew they had been in a battle.

Often slow starters away from home, Cov moved into top gear from the outset, it being some 17 minutes before the Londoners mounted a serious attack. Coventry monopolised all the early possession and although a try didnít come, a penalty goal did after just 9 minutes Myles Dorrian slotting over from a 25 metre angle after Welsh had been warned for not moving away at a ruck.

Home prop Liffchat was yellow carded shortly afterwards for a repeat offence, Nathan Jones, who had a fine match breaking superbly before Welsh scrambled the ball into touch.

London Welsh then began to get a foot hold in the match, Harris missing a penalty attempt before Ben Russell saved the visitors by rescuing a loose ball near his own line.

Shortly afterwards Nathan Jones received yellow for a deliberate knock out and with centre Rock losing possession it was just afterwards, and with Cov down to 14 men, that winger Sampson ran in at the corner for Harris to convert with an excellent kick.

Coventry though were playing with considerable authority although once again the line out was not functioning too reliably. On 29 minutes two periods of pressure saw debutant wing Will Hurrell very much in the thick of the action. A lack of a cutting edge however was still blunting Coventryís chances however before the lead was regained. After all the pressure and from a 5 metre scrum Laurie McGlone picked up and plunged over for his 7th try of the season, Dorrian converting well for 7 Ė10.

Harris with a 31 metre penalty plus a drop goal right on 40 minutes then put Welsh 13-10 in front only for Myles Dorrian to level with a penalty four minutes into injury time. 13 points all at the break with Cov also back attacking at that stage.

Early second half action saw Harris miss two very kickable penalties for the hosts before on 53 minutes in Covís first real attack of the half George Dixon was held 5 metres short. Back came London Welsh and after a clearing penalty to touch several phases of handling finally saw prop Doran Jones scurry over, Harris missing the conversion.

In the sort of mood and form they were in however Coventry refused to buckle, Dorrian was short and wide with a 40 metre penalty attempt before, after 65 minutes, Will Hurrell, having a fine debut, was again very prominent, Cov however again failing to finish off. The pressure however was kept up, McGlone being held after a 5 metre scrum before following a further melee on the home line Chris Whitehead, another having an outstanding match, came up with the ball for try number 2, Dorrianís conversion putting his side 18-20 back in front.

It then remained that way for some 12 minutes until the late Welsh penalty and finally Dorrianís match clinching drop goal. As it went over and referee Kitt blew for the final time, Covís players and coaching staff could not hide their delight with Dorrian being mobbed. It was a fantastic end to a superb team effort embellished by a number of outstanding personal performances. And four points richly earned on a ground that has not recently been a particularly happy one if you happened to be a Coventry fan.

A particular word or two of praise as well for young Hurrell. The England Academy player signed from Leicester on loan in the week looked a genuine prospect.

Coventry. Ben Russell, Will Hurrell, George Dixon, Donovan Sanders, Ollie Winter, Myles Dorrian, Nathan Jones, Laurence Ovens, Rudi Brits, Carl Burgess, David Lyons, Henno Venter (Capt), Jamie Miller, Laurie McGlone.

Replacements; Stewart Pearl for Whitehead, Rob Dugard for Brits, Rob Walton for Lyons, Greg Thomas for Venter.

London Welsh. Tries; Paul Sampson, Paul Doran Jones. Conversion; Mark Harris. Penalty goals; Harris 1, Aled Thomas 1. Drop goal; Harris.

Coventry. Tries; Laurie McGlone, Chris Whitehead. Conversions; Myles Dorrian 2. Penalty goal; Dorrian 2 Drop goal; Dorrian

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