Alcester 38 Shipston 0
Midlands Three West (South)
ALCESTER breathed fresh life into their promotion challenge with a commanding victory over then leaders Shipston on Saturday.
The Kings Coughton side have been largely impressive at this level on the back of promotion but three defeats in the last four league games had dented momentum.
However, this hugely impressive result leaves them just five points off the promotion places despite having six teams above them in what is an extremely competitive division.
With the peak of winter weather arriving over the past week, there was uncertainty over whether Alcester’s pitches would be playable for the first and second team fixtures against Shipston but fortunately, as midday passed, the ice and snow melted away and the pitch inspections concluded the games could go ahead.
Despite having a number of regular first team players missing from their squad, Alcester were surprisingly still able to dominate the game from start to finish.
Full back Frazer Jackson was first to score with an excellent try which was then converted by fly half Max Biltcliffe, who kicked four out of six conversions on the afternoon.
Stand-in captain Jack Green extended the home side’s lead soon afterwards with his first try of the game.
Despite having the elements against them, Alcester went in 19-0 up at half time following another try from number eight Phil Birks.
Alcester’s back row of Birks, George Green and Matt Alderman never allowed the visitors a foothold in the game.
Up front Alcester put Shipston under pressure in every scrum, with prop Jason Richings a powerhouse throughout.
Alcester kept up the tempo in the second half and continued to pile on the pressure, resulting in further tries from Louis Smith, Jack Green and Alex Chiles.
Biltcliffe was named man of the match for his control of the game for the whole 80 minutes.
Alcester will seek to put the icing on the cake of an impressive 2017 when they visit Upton on Saturday.
THE 2NDS saw weeks of effort and determination rewarded as they defeated visitors Shipston 2nds 11-0.
Alcester’s points tallied up from a Luke Spencer try and two penalties from man of the match Tom Alder.
Alcester 2nds host Birmingham outfit Dixonians in a friendly on Saturday.
The worst of the weather came on Saturday night and Sunday morning, forcing all junior training and games to be cancelled.