Dorset & Wilts Division 1 North
Minety wind-chill winners
Sutton Benger 1st XV 3 pts – Minety 1st XV 19 pts
In a bruising game on a bitterly cold day, Minety took their scoring chances and defended with enough passion and organisation to prevent Sutton Benger taking theirs.
An early penalty goal provided Sutton Benger’s only points in the game.
Minety got under way thanks to a driving assault by the pack, who mauled their way over their opponents’ line so that hooker Wes Clamp could land a try.
After that, the game ebbed and flowed, with neither side able to break through within the narrow confines of the Sutton Benger pitch until Minety centre Dale Langdown took the ball on half-way. Setting off hot-foot for the try line, he jinked and dummied his way through the defence, evading all attempts at a tackle as he sped in for the score.
The first half fizzled out with a brace of yellow cards and time-outs for injuries. The home team had a player sin-binned for foul play and the visitors lost one for not rolling away in the tackle.
Sutton Benger started the second half boldly, pressing deep into Minety’s 22, but when the visitors turned over possession, Dowling set off with the ball from his own try line. Closely pursued the whole length of the pitch, he managed to stay ahead of his pursuers to run in a spectacular solo try at the other end of the field.
After that, the game slowly degenerated into a sequence of stoppages for injuries and sendings off for players from both sides. Minety came near to landing a fourth try and claiming a bonus point but never quite pulled it off, while Sutton Benger never really looked like breaching their opponents’ determined defence.
This was the first leg of a two match mini-series between these teams. They play the second leg at Minety this Saturday. Kick-off: 2.30 pm.