Telford Hornets 0 v 45 Uttoxeter
UTTOXETER continued their push for the Midlands Four West (North) title despite the absence of key personnel.
The loss of skipper Matt Nance and fellow regulars James Williams, Aaron Lakin and Jim Holmes proved no handicap as the town side emerged winners by an emphatic margin against Telford Hornets.
The visitors opened the scoring after three minutes when Paul Milward struck a fine penalty, but there was little between the sides in the opening 25 minutes.
Telford tried to play positive rugby but the Uttoxeter began to shake off their rustiness after the festive lay-off as their more patient approach work began to pay dividends.
Uttoxeter turned over a ruck and the efforts of Jake Cabrera, Richard Ufton, Mike Davies, Andy Todd and Lewis Bain allowed the onrushing Ben Gallimore to hit hit the ball at the pace.
The full-back could not be caught and ran in under the posts before Milward converted to give Uttoxeter a 10-0 lead after 29 minutes.
The hosts were then penalised and a fine long-range penalty by Milward extended the visitors’ advantage.
Telford were further punished when a fumble was picked up by James Gill and he sprinted the final 10 metres to touch down under the posts.
Milward was again on target to add the extras to give the visitors a 20-0 lead at half-time.
Uttoxeter scored almost immediately from the restart after both Pete Allen and Lawrence Paull had crashed through the midfield.
Todd spun the ball out wide right and Gallimore was able to provide the support required as he sprinted in for his second to touch down on the far right touch line.
Dan Meads replaced Ufton in the front row and Miles Pilcher came on for Cabrera.
Uttoxeter extended their lead five minutes later with an individual effort from Joe Lewis. Telford won their scrum and ran rightbut Lewis read the play and intercepted a pass before sprinting in from inside his own half to touch down under the posts.
Milward made another conversion to puty Uttoxeter 32-0 ahead.
Lewis was replaced after 55 minutes with an injury and Mat Porter joined the fray to make his first appearance of the season.
On the hour mark, Milward added another three points with a penalty as Uttoxeter kept the scoreboard ticking over.
Chris Basset was replaced by Tom Sherrat and Robert Armett was replaced by Josh Allen Telford continued to attack and a foray from deep enabled them to release their left winger up the pitch, but the attack was thwarted by solid tacking from Milward and Gallimore.
Sherrat then made a break up the right and linked well with Gallimore and Gill before the latter was tackled.
Uttoxeter were awarded a penalty and a quick tap was taken by Todd. The ball was crashed through the forwards with carries from Woolley and Davies until they penetrated into Telford’s 22.
Todd then found Paull and the young lock powered his way forward and managed to touch the ball down for a further converted try.
More scoring opportunities came Uttoxeter’s way in the final 10 minutes.
Milward came close to crossing the line and Tom Sherrat had the chance to sprint in the corner but was unable to find the right line.
A high tackle on Gallimore yielded a final penalty that Milward put away as he finished off an excellent display with the boot.
Uttoxeter host in form Clee Hill on Saturday and will be seeking revenge for their 3-0 defeat earlier in the season.