Lymm 2nds 31 – 29 Anselmians 2nds

2nd Team Match Report | Saturday November 4 2023

2s Kick Their Way to Victory

Lymm 2nd team got their season back on track with a battling victory at home against fellow strugglers Anselmians 2nds.  In a tough match, Lymm showed their rugby brains by taking all the points on offer, even if some aging rugby scribes (who can you be talking about?) regard this with scorn.

This season has been particularly challenging one for the 2s so far in getting a team together in this highly competitive league, with this week being no different.  Facing a serious deficit of players from late dropouts and unavailability of others, Managers Pete Millachip and Neil Ellam were fortunate to be able to call on support from the Eagles who were also facing a significant challenge of their own against local rivals Moore 1XV.  In the event, a total of 5 players, Dave Coon, Jim France, Ben Stroud, Josh Keefe, and Chris Mundy stepped up to bring the squad numbers up to a more respectable 18 players.  Dave Coon and this scribe had actually set off to Moore before being diverted.  Fortunately, this did mean that we can now provide a match report for the 2nd team and provide our unique take on all things Rugby.

Before kick-off, it was great to see Club veterans Jordan Widdrington and Jake Ashall continuing to pull on a Lymm shirt, as well as catching up with several regular 2nd team players who continue to put in their time and effort for this great club.   Our opponents, Anselmians 2XV, made the short trip from Birkenhead to arrive in plenty of time for the first 2.15pm kick off of the season.

Despite the wet and cold conditions and a rather slippery pitch, the game set off a very brisk pace with both sides keen to strive for dominance. The rather frantic scrabbling for a greasy ball led to many mistakes on both sides and it was after only 3 minutes play that the visitors conceded the first of many penalties. Scrum half James Anderson made short work of the kick to open the score for Lymm (0-3).  Play continued with both sets of forwards doing their best to secure the ball and after 8 minutes play Lymm was judged to have infringed on their 10m line and Anselmians took the opportunity to level the score with an excellent kick (3-3).

At the first scrum following the restart, Lymm forwards, with a formidable front row of Jordan Widdrington, Harry Radcliffe, and Dave Coon, worked as a coherent unit to march the opposition back a good 10m before the scrum went down and Lymm were awarded a penalty. The safe boot of Anderson added the points (6-3).   Lymm were quick to retrieve the ball from the restart and short safe passes through the backs to winger Ben Youlden-Cole to shrug off a couple of half tackles and sprint over for the first try of the day.  Another accurate kick from James Anderson brought the score to (13-3) after less than 15 minutes play.  Unfortunately Anselmians frustration with the scoreline seemed to affect their judgement and they conceded another penalty only a few minutes later. James Anderson appeared to be able to kick from almost anywhere on the pitch and added another 3 points from close to the halfway line (16-3).  This latest score seemed to galvanise Anselmians into action and through a combination of good forward drives and quick handling in the backs, they worked their way up the pitch and, despite valiant tackling from winger Reynolds and centre Caldwell, managed to scamper round the last line of defence for a well worked converted try (16-10) on 20 minutes.

The next quarter of the half seemed to entirely consist of both teams exchanging long range kicks between each other’s 22m lines with the odd line out being thrown in to make it interesting.  This was probably not the best tactic for Lymm as their forwards were clearly dominant in both the set pieces and loose play and a closer tighter approach might have paid greater dividends. Some wag on the sidelines asked if the kickers had received instructions from England Head Coach, Steve Borthwick such was the extent of the exchange of “Tennis” kicks.  Despite this, Lymm continued to capitalise on Anselmian’s mistakes and James Anderson duly gathered another 6 points from the resulting penalties (22-10). Unfortunately as half time approached, Lymm seemed to take their eye off the ball, even when it was not high in the air, and a couple of missed tackles allowed Anselmians to crash over in the corner for a try.  The missed conversion brought the score to (22-15) at the half time whistle.

Half Time: LYMM 22 – 15 ANSELMIANS

The second half kicked off and immediately, powerful runs from Lymm’s lock forwards Ben Stroud and Quinn Peers provided a solid platform for attack.  Lymm’s domination in the scrums continued which allowed several good pick and go sniping runs by No 8 Jake Ashall well supported by flanker Jim France. Pressure was also building through the backs with full back Ed Dobbs, moving into the line to create overlaps with both wingers and a Lymm try looked an almost certainty.  However, yet another unforced error by Anselmians was swiftly penalised by the eagle eyed Referee and James Anderson added 3 more points (25-15) only a few minutes into the second half.

A lead of 10 points probably gave Lymm a false sense of security and Anselmians appeared to sense this.  They reorganised their forwards and came storming back putting Lymm under serious pressure in midfield.  Eventually this well directed pressure enabled them to press steadily forward and then release their backs for a well worked try under the posts which was duly converted (25-22) on 50 minutes. 5 minutes later, yet another penalty from Anselmians was turned into points by James Anderson from a very difficult field position (28-22).

Although they were well aware that the visitors were still only less than one score behind, Lymm seemed to struggle to be able to hold back the constant stream of attacks from their backs. Eventually, a quick switch of direction and a long looping pass out to the Anselmian winger allowed him to swerve round the last Lymm defender and score in the corner.  Their accurate kicker made a great long range conversion to put Anselmians in the lead for the first time in the match on 60 minutes (28-29).

Fortunately, Lymm did not panic and concentrated on keeping the ball in hand and possession tight in the forwards. Once again, it seemed only a matter of time before Anselmian were penalised well within kicking distance of the posts. With only 4 minutes remaining on the clock, James Anderson’s usually spot on kicking appeared to desert him and the ball sailed just wide of the posts. Following the 22 restart, Lymm recovered the ball and threw everything they had at the opposition in an attempt to get close to the try line.  With the seconds ticking away, shouts of “drop goal, drop goal” were heard from the sidelines. However, the next sound that was heard was the Referee’s whistle announcing yet another penalty against Anselmians. This time, James Anderson’s kicking was spot on and Lymm got the 3 points they needed to regain the lead (31-29).  Lymm retained possession of the ball following the restart for the minute or so until the Referee confirmed full time when the ball was booted unceremoniously off the pitch. Phew!

Full Time: LYMM 31 – 29 ANSELMIANS

A good result for the Lymm 2s who were very well matched against a strong Anselmians.  However, analysis of the scoreline shows that, with only 5 points coming from their single try, 26 of the points came from kicks courtesy of an in-form James Anderson.  An excellent performance from James by any standard and which much surely deserve the man of the match award.  However, without the platform being laid in the forwards, these kicks would not be possible.  Special mention must go to Harry Radcliffe and Quinn Peers for their powerful runs and defensive efforts. Anselmians, on the other hand, managed to get over the Lymm try line 4 times and also benefitted from having a very good kicker. Lymm were perhaps fortunate to benefit from the many mistakes and resulting penalties awarded against Anselmians.  However, such luck cannot always be guaranteed.

Nevertheless, a win is a win and congratulations must go to all the Lymm players result for a very strong performance.  Big thanks should go to the 5 Eagles players who stepped up to support the 2s.  The Eagles themselves suffered a narrow defeat at Moore and now must wait for the return fixture for a chance to level the score.

Next week, Lymm 2XV are away to Wirral 2XV, 14:15 KO.  Your support would be more than welcome.

Team: 1) Jordan Widdrington (C) 2) Harry Radcliffe 3) David Coon 4) Ben Stroud 5) Quinn Peers 6) Jim France 7) Rory Cartlidge 8) Jake Ashall  9) James Anderson 10) George Anderson 11) Jorge Reynolds  12) Max Caldwell 13) Ryan Brown 14) Ben Youlden-Cole 15) Ed Dobbs  REP 16) Mat Abram 17) Josh Keefe 18) Chris Mundy

Match Report: Pete & David Coon



The form was submitted successfully.

You will now be redirected to our payment page.