Grosvenor Rugby I XV – Losing bonus point at Omagh Rugby I XV

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It was back down to earth with a bump for Grosvenor following their heroics against the Dee last week. They were forced to make a few changes in personnel, including a last minute call up for Taylz for an errant Peter McKeown who had gone AWOL.
Despite the bright, mild weather, conditions were sticky underfoot and it seemed to slow Grosvenor down as they seemed to be going through the motions in the first ten minutes. Ryan Stewart then made a lovely break on half-way in the centre and off-loaded to Kochy who was hauled down 15 metres from the line. Omagh were full of vigour and when the chance of a score came they were clinical in their execution. A loose pass in midfield by Grosvenor was pounced on and the big Omagh runners crashed up around the fringes making good yards.

After several phases of play they got their rewards with a try under the posts. Conversion added 7-0. Ten minutes later, from a line-out on Omagh’s 22 Grosvenor’s forwards rumbled and rolled their maul to the line, Jack Adams getting the touch-down in the corner. 7-5. A few minutes later Jim Neill single-handedly broke up an Omagh attack with two crunching tackles, one after the other. Grosvenor then broke out of their own 22 and released Chris Quinn up the right wing who scorched 60m up the line before passing inside, but the cover tackling by Omagh was good and the chance was gone. As half-time approached Omagh upped the pace of their game and once inside the Grosvenor 22 their big forwards crashed up around the fringes and got a great try. 12-5.
Grosvenor started the second half strongly and following a great break by Cartmill in midfield the ball was whipped wide to Davy Egner who sprinted over and around behind the posts for a super try. Conversion added 12-12. Grosvenor started to show more composure going forward and forced a penalty in front of the posts. But the ensuing kick bounced off an upright and Omagh cleared the danger. A lapse in concentration at a scrum in Grosvenor’s half allowed Omagh to steal possession and they forced a penalty in front of the posts. 15-12. Grosvenor quickly worked their way back upfield and forced a penalty to level the scores. 15-15. As the game entered the final quarter Davy Egner made an outrageous Gallic-style break from under the Grosvenor posts, making 30 metres before putting in a deft chip which he came withing a whisker of gathering just inside the Omagh half. But the ball went into touch and the chance was gone. Chris Quinn was then reduced to walking-wounded following a collision involving three players. Omagh were awarded a line-out on Grosvenor’s 22 which they took quickly and stuck with the tactic that had served them well so far, their big runners crashing up around the fringes. Grosvenor eventually ran out of tacklers and the try came under the posts. Conversion added. 22-15. Grosvenor were not done yet and in the last few minutes they attacked relentlessly, eventually winning a penalty in front of the posts. But with only a few minutes on the clock and the losing bonus point more or less guaranteed, they opted for the scrum hoping for a try. But the Omagh defence held firm and the clock ticked away to full-time with Grosvenor camped on the Omagh line.
A valuable losing bonus point but Grosvenor will be very disappointed not to have gained more from this game. On the plus side Peter Dawson looked every inch a 1st XV player following his call-up in second-row and some of Grosvenor’s counter attacking was exhilarating to watch. Man-of-the-match goes to Kochy who had a blinder.

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