Hornets concede three tries in final 10 minutes
PUBLISHED: 10:08 17 March 2017 | UPDATED: 10:08 17 March 2017
(C)2016 Jeremy Long / JCLPhotography, all rights reserved
With a win looking promising, Hornets conceded three tries in the final 10 minutes to crash to defeat at Lydney.
Lydney 36 pts
Hornets 13 pts
Things went from bad to worse for Hornets after last week’s disappointing defeat to Brixham, they capitulated in the final 10 minutes against Lydney and ended up being on the wrong end of an embarrassing defeat, when a win looked more likely with 10 minutes remaining.
Lydney started well and forced a series of early penalties. They should have taken the lead, but a bizarre decision to take a quick cross kick when three points were on offer saw Oscar James pluck the ball out of the air on his own line and break upfield to the Lydney 22, before the ball was knocked on.
Lydney did register the first score on their next attack. The Hornets defence was weak as the Lydney second row burst through the line to score.
Hornets were giving away far too many penalties, but they scored next when Chris Francis scored at the back of an attacking maul. With no recognised kicker in the squad, the conversion was missed.
A flowing attacking move then saw the ball moved quickly amongst James, Sam Balkham and Danny Bailey, resulting in Bailey wrestling his way over for an impressive score and a 7-10 lead for Hornets.
Hornets defence looked to have repelled a series of attacks from Lydney, but the referee thought differently as he awarded a penalty and showed Adam Francis a yellow card. The visitors replied with a penalty through Joe Gadd on half-time to lead 10-13.
Lydney scored early in the second half, following Kieran Ward being shown a yellow card, to nudge into the lead 15-10. Both sides then slugged it out for most of the second period with neither being add to the score.
As the half wore on, Hornets created chances and their pack, led impressively by Sonny Haines, looked as though they might steal a victory, but in the dying minutes the wheels came off altogether.
Hornets lost their way completely and seemed to freeze as Lydney threw the ball wide and ran in three tries in the last 10 minutes to register an important bonus point victory in their battle against relegation.
Hornets were left shell shocked at the end with the depleted squad looking to each other for answers as to why they had lost all focus and concentration, which resulted in a possible win turning into a miserable defeat.
They now have a week off, but will be looking over their shoulders in the hope that they do not get pulled into a relegation battle. With four games left it is still possible for two of the bottom three teams to catch Hornets.
It is therefore vital they find another win from somewhere, starting with the visit to The Nest of Cleve in two weeks time.
In order to do this, they need to get their injured players back on the field and find some way to encourage the players who have been unavailable in recent weeks back into the mix, giving the coaches the opportunity to select from a stronger squad.