The Mob travelled to The Paton Field for the first time in over four years in the first round of this seasons Championship Cup, and following a close game at Dillingham Park two weeks ago Head Coach Paul Turner had warned that Caldy would be “a real challenge at home”.
Caldy were motivated by the result at Dillingham Park and that combined with “proper rugby weather” contributed to a keenly contested game.
The Mob took first blood on only four minutes, the backs combining well and following great link play between outside centre Jackson and wing Skelcey the former dived over. Full-back Conor Rankin added the extras, 0 v 7
Caldy reduced the arrears to two points on 18 minutes – a trademark catch and drive and the maul went forward. Prop Higginson credited with the try. Conversion missed from wide. 5 v 7
Ampthill were putting the hosts under pressure and the Caldy defence was equal to the Mob every move. When awarded a penalty on 32 minutes, Rankin extended the lead to 5 v 10 from the tee for the final score of the first half. Weather conditions dictating the decision to kick but both teams still trying to play football!
Rankin scored his third kick and Ampthill’s final points of the afternoon within two minutes of the restart! 6 phases resulting in a penalty and again Captain Beckett pointed to the posts, 5 v 13
6 minutes later Caldy reduced the arrears again to 3 – with a penalty advantage the Ravers backs linked up to put number 8 Ridgeway in, conversion missed 10 v 13
On 51 minutes Caldy took the lead for the first time in the game. A 50m break from scrum-half Nye Thomas and the forward on his shoulder picked up the pieces to score. A successful conversion the final score of the game 17 v 13
Both teams continued to try and play but with a greasy ball unforced errors were common. The Mob thought they’d restored the lead on 66 minutes following a catch and drive but were adjudged to be held up. Injuries and both teams emptying the bench disrupted the final quarter but Cadly were resistant to any pressure from the Mob, and held on for a deserved first home win of the season.
Following the game, Head Coach Paul Turner commented “We were in control of the game at half time but again defensive errors have a seen a result slip away from us. We were held up over the line near the end which was crucial. Credit to Caldy for playing the conditions better than us – they deserved their win today”