Old Coventrians 31 Alcester 15
Midlands Three West (South)
ALCESTER’S outside chances of clinching a top two finish took a severe dent on Saturday when a late flurry of tries failed to rescue any reward from their visit to fourth-placed Old Coventrians.
Defeat dropped the visitors a place to sixth and leaves them ten points behind second-placed Shipston with just six matches remaining.
Old Coventrians took an early lead and were two tries ahead within the first 15 minutes as Alcester were plagued by bad hands and knock-ons and struggled to find their form.
Jack Green posed the visitors’ biggest threat of the first half and went on a great attacking run but nothing came of it.
Old Coventrians then scored a third try before half time to secure a 17-0 lead at the break.
A joint effort by Alcester’s youngsters led to the first points being scored for the Red & Blacks when Jamie Harland went on a break after turning the ball over in a ruck before it made its way to Josh O’Connor, who was playing on the wing, to score in the corner.
Old Coventrians were undeterred though and it was not long before they scored their bonus point try to all but seal victory.
Alcester were, however, looking dangerous out wide and the players began to realise this is where they were posing the biggest attacking threat. A floating ball made it to Lewis Hopkins on the left wing and he doubled Alcester’s tally with their second try.
Enjoying a brilliant game at centre, Harland registered Alcester’s third try but after the restart man of the match Ben Hope went down with an injury and was forced off the pitch, which slowed down the momentum Alcester had just built up from the previous tries.
With energy dwindling, Alcester were unable to stop a home player slipping through their defence to score the final try of the match.
Alcester resume league action at home to third-placed Old Leamingtonians on March 3.
ALCESTER 2nds scored a last-minute try to seal a 26-22 victory over local rivals Redditch.
Redditch immediately piled on the pressure and were rewarded with an early try but ten minutes later Alcester man of the match Jack Kendall levelled the score before Redditch scored their second try.
Kendall then scored another try which Chris Howell successfully converted to give Alcester a 12-10 break at half time.
George Green was first to cross the line in the second half after a fine Alcester move and Howell converted again.
However, Alcester then appeared to lose their grip on the game and conceded two tries to surrender their lead and also had Luke Spencer yellow-carded.
There was still more drama to come though and a sin-binning for Redditch gave Alcester the extra man for the remaining minutes of the game, which was all they needed for James Bates to crash over the line and the boot of Howell to secure victory on the final whistle.
Both Alcester sides face Droitwich on Saturday. The first team visit Droitwich 2nds and Alcester 2nds host Droitwich 3rds.