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RUGBY UNION: Rampant Welsh storm home for bonus point
10:00am Monday 23rd September 2013 in Rugby
(tries Styles, Harrison; pens Jarvis 3)
London Welsh 46
(tries Kirwan, Crane, Stegmann, Mama; cons Ross 4; pens Ross 6)
London Welsh made it two wins from two in the Greene King IPA Championship with a bonus-point victory over Nottingham at Meadow Lane yesterday.
A tight first half saw the Exiles lead 15-9 thanks to the boot of Gordon Ross, with Matthew Jarvis on target three times for the Green and Whites.
However, the game opened up in the second half with the Exiles responding in emphatic style to Edward Styles’ early try, as Carl Kirwan and ex-Nottingham winger Rhys Crane crossed in a two-minute spell that swung the game in Welsh’s favour.
Seb Stegmann claimed the visitors’ third try of a match televised live on Sky Sports, and although Harrison Lee-Everton dived over for Nottingham, the Exiles were not to be denied a four-try bonus-point as Dante Mama touched down at the death.
The opening 40 minutes gave little indication of the try-fest that was to follow after the break, as Ross and Jarvis engaged in a tit-for-tat kicking duel.
The home side made the breakthrough five minutes into the second half.
Diving forward, Ben Pienaar couldn’t quite collect a clearance downfield and the loose ball was hacked on by Styles, and the winger had the legs to beat Jewell to the touch down.
Jarvis couldn’t add the conversion, but Welsh’s lead had been cut to a solitary point.
The Exiles needed a response and it came via Ross’ sixth penalty. Six minutes later came the game’s turning point.
A double hit on Crane saw the home side initially awarded a penalty as Welsh infringed, only for that decision to be reversed on the advice of the touch judge for a high tackle.
To add salt into the hosts’ wounds, Welsh went straight down the field and scored.
Having found a good touch on the Nottingham 22 from the resulting penalty, Kirwan broke the first line of the home defence before shrugging off another to go over under the posts.
Ross converted and two minutes later kicked the Exiles into an 18-point lead after Welsh countered straight from the restart, and Crane had the strength to touch down against his former club.
Pinning Nottingham in their own 22 then, the ball spilt out of a ruck and the unopposed Stegmann sauntered over for Welsh’s third try.
The home side kept going and Lee-Everton took a quick tap penalty on the Exiles’ line and dived over.
But the last word went to Welsh with their task made easier by Rupert Cooper seeing yellow.
Kevin Davis intercepted, and Lees delivered the scoring pass for Mama to cross.
Ross kept his 100 per cent record by landing the conversion.
Nottingham: Savage, Styles, Catchpole, Munro, Hough, Jarvis (Lynn 78), Romans (Lee-Everton 72), Ma’afu (Bower 72), Vickers, Holford (Williams 61), Keogh (Price 72), Montagu, Cooper, Wilson (capt), Shaw (Burton 62). Replacement not used: Wright.
London Welsh: Jewell (Mama 78), Crane, J Lewis, May (capt), Stegmann, Ross, R Lewis (Frost 76), Trevett (Tideswell 61), Titterrell, Edwards (Griffiths 46), Andrew (Davis 72), Browne (Corker 66), Lees (Stedman 55 – blood), Kirwan, Pienaar (Lees 63 – blood reversal).
Referee: I Tempest.
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