Saturday 9 October 2010
Dorset & Wilts Division 3 North
Winning in Warminster
Warminster 2nd XV 32 pts – Minety 2nd XV 34 pts
A long way from home and with no replacements on the bench, Minety seconds battled on to snatch a last-minute victory in a nail-bitingly close encounter in Warminster.
Travelling with a bare 15 players and no subs, Minety started brightly, running three quick tries past their hosts. The first two went one each to the prolific centre pairing of Luke Radcliffe and Milo Hartley, with Andy Edwards kicking a conversion on his second attempt.
Minety’s third try belonged to the forwards, who mauled their way doggedly towards their opponents’ line before Richard Hibbard broke from the back of the formation to score.
But if the visitors thought that they were going to have everything their own way, Warminster had other ideas, storming back with three tries of their own.
A second try for Luke Radcliffe and a subsequent conversion from Edwards saw Minety increase their points tally, but a penalty goal by the hosts closed the gap to 18-24 at the interval.
Coming back strongly in the second half, Warminster battled on for another try and then added the conversion to inch ahead by a single point.
Refusing to give up, the visitors hung in the game and when scrumhalf and Man of the Match Andy Brown put in a cross-field punt, skipper Steve Murray was first in pursuit. The Warminster fullback fielded the ball, but couldn’t hang onto it when the Minety prop caught him in possession. The ball went loose, only to be snaffled up by Brown, following up his own kick. He piled over for the try and another successful conversion by Edwards seemed to have secured the lead once more.
Not a bit of it. Warminster ran in a final try and, with only two minutes to go, added a conversion of their own to go ahead 32-31.
But the drama was still not over. Minety pressed, Warminster knocked on and then compounded their problems by straying offside, leaving Edwards to settle matters one way or the other with a final penalty goal attempt.
With admirable calm, he booted the ball over the bar to claim the win for Minety, who also gained a bonus point for scoring four tries or more.