KENILWORTH RUGBY FOOTBALL CLUB
Kenilworth 2nd XV continue good league form with latest win at Silhillians on Saturday (5th), writes Andy McKenzie.
With several changes to the team that beat Spartans last week, Kenilworth 2nd XV just about came out with a win at Silhillians in very tough circumstances. With no referee appointed to the game, Kenilworth turned up to be told that one of the Silhillians players would give it a go. Off he went to find a whistle and the game was underway. Kenilworth started well with some good pressure by the pack. Luke Green forcing the turnover and supplying the ball to the backs in good field position. Some slick hands through the backs allowed Speedster winger Sam Morris to run in his first try of the game in the corner. Converted by Callum Armstrong. 0-7.
Kenilworth continued the pressure with big carries from Will Blackmore and Ben Brown eventually forcing a penalty at the breakdown. Armstrong converted the penalty to make it 0-10. Kenilworth were looking too comfortable and turned the screw again. Jack Rawlins and Armstrong linking well together at 9 and 10 taking Kenilworth up the field with intent. Some fine backs moves allowed Sam Morris to get his 2nd try which was not converted. 0-15.
Jai Purewal in his first run out of the season tackled well and produced a jackal master class to turn over the ball deep into Ks territory only for the Sils player to hold on to the ball for what seemed like a few minutes. The referee did not blow his whistle and instead penalised Kens which allowed Sils to take control and score out wide on the wing. The conversion making the score 7-15.
Just before half time Number 8 Purewal turned on the style again and with an outrageous chip over the top set up the best try of the game. Adam Turner also in his first game of the season chased the kick and touched down for his first try of the season. Converted out wide by Armstrong. The score was now 7-22 and Kenilworth looked like they could run away with the game.
Just before half time Sils became frustrated and let their discipline go. High tackling and fighting changed the flow of what was a decent first half of rugby. With Kenilworth rattled, Sils ran in another try at the end of the first half. Half time 14-22
The 2nd half started in the same manner with constant bickering on the pitch. If the ref had a yellow card in his possession it would have been welcomed at this point to take back control of the game. However Kenilworth took the bait and stopped playing rugby. The constant foul play went unpunished and gave Sils the advantage they needed to get back into the game. Deep into the 2nd half Sils continued to run at the Kenilworth line only to be hit hard with huge tackles being put in by Armstrong and Green in particular. Sils eventually scored a third try finally breaking through the Kenilworth defence to bring the score to 19-22. With the game now resembling the WWE Royal Rumble more than a game of rugby. Kenilworth tried hard to keep their composure but were now in danger of losing the game through their own lack of discipline.
Kenilworth were not hanging on to the lead and desperately needed another try to settle the game. The try finally came in one of the final plays of the game.
Up stepped Luke Green who with bloodshot eyes and foam at the mouth picked up the ball and ran around 40 meters. With one man to beat for the try, Luke decided the easiest route would be straight through the opposing full back. The huge collision pumped up the Kenilworth players and turned the game back into Kens favour. Exactly what was needed to get Kenilworth back on track. Raj Bahey and Jack Rawlins rallied the troops for one final burst and Kenilworth started to play some rugby again. Some well structured phases of play brought Kenilworth within meters of the Sils try line. The 4th and final try was eventually scored by Sam (doesn’t answer his messages)Richards scoring his 2nd try of the season. The conversion by Armstrong making the score 19-32 and silencing the Silhillians crowd and players. Kenilworth were able to finish the game as they started, by playing simple rugby, putting phases together and keeping their discipline. Captain Raj Bahey and the management unanimously picked Luke Green as the man of the match. The young 2nd row maintained a fantastic work rate throughout the 80 minutes and put in some crunching tackles. His last run is what turned the game around at a time we needed to take control again.
Many thanks to the Sils referee who stepped up to allow the game to go ahead. With a shortage of referees being a regular occurrence at the moment it is important for 2nd teams to play regular rugby and without the Sils player we would have not been able to play at all. Kenilworth will have learned a lot about themselves in this game and no doubt will look to improve when last seasons Warwickshire shield final opponents Leamington come to Glasshouse Lane next Saturday(12th) for a local derby. The only way to do that is by training!
Support is always welcome at games and really does make a difference to the players.