Redditch 13 Bromyard 45
Midlands Four West (South)
FOR the second successive game Redditch could not build on a promising first half performance as they disintegrated in the second period on Saturday.
Seven days earlier the Kingfishers had started well against promoted Alcester, only to fall away, and they did so again against their Herefordshire visitors for whom victory secured the title.
The opening attacks were promising for Redditch and one stolen lineout allowed Jack Duffy to run deep into the opposition, who conceded a penalty which was converted for three points by Sam Gladwin.
Spurred on by the impetus, Redditch passed and attacked with growing confidence and Mark Green scored their opening try following a fluid passage of play which included a stunning looping long pass from Bryn Williams which cut out half the defence.
At times Redditch were camped in the Bromyard half yet, despite some probing runs from Will Ballion and Nathan Marthews in particular, they were unable to build on their lead.
One dangerous attack by the home backs failed when Williams pulled up lame like a Grand National thoroughbred and had to limp off with a pulled hamstring.
The enforced change in line-up was to have major influence on the direction the game would take.
After one Bromyard attack had been snuffed out, a clearance kick failed to make touch, the visitors ran it back and for the first time in the game the jinking speedsters avoided tackles, laying the foundations for Bromyard’s first try and setting a pattern that was to dominate the second half.
Redditch led 8-7 at the interval but it did not take long for Bromyard to take the lead. Following a try-saving tackle from Ballion, Bromyard span the ball wide and their pace was too much for the Redditch defence.
A third try for the visitors soon followed, as did ten minutes of Redditch being a man short.
A man down, two scores down and Redditch heads went down again.
Some tackling was emphatic, as debutant Chris Percival left his mark on the opposition, whilst Ballion and Green also earned their crust with some fine examples, but it was the tap tackles that all too often allowed the visitors to gain ground and points as they ran in four more tries.
There were, however, some big positives for Redditch who, with ball in hand, the backs often looked dangerous but too often were penalised for basic errors.
The back row was on top going forward, Marthews in particular whose many runs included a 60m carry deep into the second half which barrelled would-be tacklers in all directions.
Duffy constantly gained ground with incisive drives and second row Mike Adams, growing in potential, scored an agile try by squeezing between tackler and corner flag.
The final score possibly flattered Bromyard but seventh placed Redditch will need to tackle more effectively if they are to win their last match of the season at Claverdon on April 22.