LENZIE’S first league game of 2013 was a real Jekyll and Hyde affair – four well constructed and taken tries for a bonus point win, interspersing an error-strewn and lacklustre performance.
Lenzie kicked off with the wind in their favour and after a scrappy start, with neither side managing to hold on to the ball, Lenzie opened the scoring on eight minutes.
A clean line-out take on the home side’s 22 gave the platform for the backs to attack with quick ball and McKnight raced through a large gap of Red Sea proportions in the Clydebank defence to score.
Morrison added two points with a successful conversion.
Worse was to follow for the home side as their young second row Connor Sloss suffered a bad leg injury with only a further two minutes on the clock. A special mention to the Lenzie “medical team” who made Connor as comfortable as possible until the ambulance arrived.
With the game delayed for approximately 40 minutes, it was Lenzie who came out of the blocks faster. A break by the evergreen Hardie on halfway was well supported by McWilliams and Paton, and McAslan was on hand to score Lenzie’s second try.
At this point, with the wind in their favour, it was expected that Lenzie would kick on and extend their lead, but it was Clydebank who started to show a greater appetite for the fight. Their efforts were rewarded with a try by their left wing which was converted to cut Lenzie’s lead to five.
Lenzie continued to make too many mistakes and too often tried to play rugby from deep within their own half.
The one remaining bright spot in the first half was Lenzie’s third try. Queenan picked up from a scrum on the visitors’ 22 and linked with Hardie, who released Nisbett – who made fully 50 metres before Queenan rejoined the move. He was supported by Brown to crash over for the score of the day.
At half-time it was 17-7 for Lenzie.
Clydebank played a simple, but very effective game plan in the second half – use the wind to gain good field position and put pressure on Lenzie as they tried to run the ball back. With barely a minute played the home side scored a penalty given away needlessly by Lenzie.
Five minutes later Clydebank were awarded another penalty and, following a kick to the corner and line-out take, the pack rumbled over for a well-deserved try.
With the conversion unsuccessful Clydebank were only two points in arrears and it only looked a matter of time before they would take the lead. At last Lenzie started to perform more consistently and managed to retain possession for longer periods.
A sustained effort from forwards and backs took Lenzie into the home 22 and, with Clydebank handling in the ruck, McKinlay was successful with the resultant penalty after 65 minutes play.
Three minutes later, following a secure scrum, Morrison put a well-placed kick in behind the home defence. Nisbett outpaced the Clydebank cover and did superbly well to control the ball and score the bonus point try. McKinlay’s touchline conversion was also a tremendous effort. A further successful McKinlay penalty completed the scoring.
It was a good result for Lenzie against a determined Clydebank team. This Saturday Lenzie entertain Strathaven (kick-off 2pm) and there will need to be much hard work at training this week and a much-improved performance against one of the form sides in the league.
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