Tows slip to defeat at Stoke in Midland Cup

Stoke-on-Trent 19

Towcestrians 7

Tows slumped to their second defeat of the season, going down to Stoke in the semi-final of the Midland Intermediate Cup.

Playing against a strong wind, Tows had the first scoring chance after a break from centre David Devlin-Jones but the solid home defence held out and this proved to be a feature of the game.

After kicking a penalty, Stoke, who seemed more fired up, took hold of the game, and only an excellent cover tackle from Aaron Goodman prevented a certain try.

A converted try from Stoke centre Simon Price saw the hosts take a deserved ten point lead.

In the ten minutes leading up half time, Towcestrians found their feet and at last got into the game.

Pressure on the hosts’ line led to a penalty try through the collapsing of a retreating scrum.

Yuill added the easy conversion and Tows turned round 10-7 adrift.

Now playing into the wind, Stoke used the elements in their favour.

Their influential scrum-half either fed his charging forwards or hoisted hanging kicks.

Tows failure to clear on such a kick, handed Stoke a penalty which allowed them to increase their lead to 13-7.

Tows’ chance of staying in the game was sapped by injuries to both centres, a winger and scrum-half Austen Wheldon who dislocated his elbow.

They scraped through to the end with four props on the field and two back row players in midfield.

Their problems were compounded when Chrissie George was yellow carded and considering the disruption, they did well to restrict Stoke to just two further penalties.

Tows are back in league action this Saturday hosting Stockwood Park at Greens Norton Road, kick-off 3pm.

>>Brackley RUFC 1st XV saw their home game against St Andrews last Saturday postponed due to a waterlogged pitch after heavy rain on Friday and Saturday.

>> Buckingham managed to play their fixture at High Wycombe but went down 31-10 to a powerful side.