Matlock RFC 2nds 22
WITH the first team without a game at the weekend, attention turned to Matlock’s second team and their eagerly awaited Pennant League fixture at The Stute against local rivals Ilkeston 2nds.
Matlock were up against a team they had not beaten for some time and who had a big and forceful pack at their disposal.
Ilkeston made the early running and, by the time Matlock turned round at half-time, they were already 18-10 down.
But some determined running by both the forwards and backs enabled Matlock to score a try against the run of play.
A cool interchange of passes between the two wings was successful in leading to the try.
It went unconverted to leave the visitors trailing by three points.
Matlock’s loosehead prop was sinbinned for punching, which was a decision that proved difficult to understand when he appeared to be bridging a ruck with both arms at the time.
With their numerical advantage, Ilkeston tried to dominate the last ten minutes of the game.
However, a further try saw Matlock edge through in the last two minutes to record a fine victory over one of their fiercest rivals.
There was also a bonus point for the four tries scored.
Meanwhile, the high-flying Matlock third XV enjoyed a particularly productive afternoon against Ripley Rhinos in a game played at Mill Hill, brushing aside their hosts to win 70-0.
Ripley were never really in the game and six tries in each half came about through Matlock’s superior fitness, pace and ability to bring their runners through from deep.
These qualities helped to make it a very long afternoon for an off-the-pace home outfit. Matlock took full advantage of a weak Rhinos display to avenge their defeat at Cromford Meadows earlier in the season.
This weekend, Matlock’s firsts return to action with a Midlands One East league encounter at home to Wellingborough, with the match starting at 3pm.