Brackley snatch late victory over Sileby

Will Cooper breaks a tackle and goes over for the match-winning try
Will Cooper breaks a tackle and goes over for the match-winning try

Brackley squeezed to a 17-14 victory over Sileby Town in a nail-biting Midlands Four East (South) encounter.

It was the first time that the two clubs had met and they proved to be well-matched, with Brackley just shading it by three tries and one conversion against two converted tries from Sileby.

The home side were unusually flat for most of the opening half with the visiting pack driving over for the opening score, followed by a well-struck conversion.

That served as a wake-up call for Brackley and powerful running from prop Graeme Cartmell and winger Dan Cooper tested the opposition before Danton Robinson tore down the tramlines from around the halfway line to touch down in the corner for an unconverted try.

Trailing by two points at half-time, Brackley took the lead for the first time in the match when Jim Hollyoake outpaced his pursuers and just had the legs to beat a last-ditch covering tackle and go over for a spectacular try. Mike Lowdell added the extras to put his side 12-7 ahead.

Back came Sileby, who pegged Brackley inside their own half and this time they had their reward. A switch in the line of attack caught the hosts out and the visitors were through for a converted try and a lead of two points.

A nerve-jangling final 10 minutes ensued as Sileby sought to close out the match and Brackley threw everything into achieving one more score. Time and again determined tackling by Sileby denied Brackley until, with three minutes to play, Will Cooper gathered the ball at a breakdown and raced over the line for the match-winning try.

Brackley visit Thorney for a league game this Saturday.