WORCESTER Warriors’ scrum-half Ollie Frost watched his Bromyard charges for the first time – and felt they were unlucky to lose a hard-fought local derby.
The Hereford lad is Bromyard’s full-time coach this season but his playing commitments had prevented him from seeing the Herefordshire side in action.
The former Bishop’s School pupil was on the bench for Worcester Warriors’ narrow 19-14 Premiership defeat against Leicester Tigers at Sixways on Friday night.
And Frost was biting his nails on the sidelines at the Clive Richards Sports Ground on Saturday afternoon as Bromyard slipped to an agonising home reverse in Midlands Four West (North).
“I was very impressed with the team,” said 23-year-old Frost, who has made 34 first-team appearances for Warriors.
“It’s hard to see Bromyard train but not to see them play at the weekends.
“It’s good to see the boys in action for the first time and especially, Scott Holloway, who does a great job when I am not here on a Saturday.
“I thought Bromyard were unlucky to lose - it could have gone either way,” added Frost, who has also been playing on-loan for Surrey-based Esher in National One.
Bromyard are third-from- bottom after seven defeats from 10 league matches and will wonder how they failed to win last weekend’s derby on a heavy pitch.
Promotion-chasing Tenbury led 12-3 at the interval but Bromyard dominated the second period.
Centre Bazil Cross had the home fans cheering in the 67th minute when he dived under the posts for a converted try after a sustained period of forward dominance.
And, then six minutes later, Bromyard looked certain to score again but Cross ignored a big overlap on his right and was hauled down just short of the Tenbury try-line and the chance was lost.
Chris Rowberry, who slotted Bromyard’s first points on the stroke of half-time, missed two penalties after the interval.
Referee Iain Morris had earlier sent Tenbury’s Will Gough to the sin-bin for persistent foul play at the breakdown and hosts Bromyard won a succession of penalties deep in the visitors’ 22.
Bromyard skipper Scott Holloway felt the wrong decisions at crucial times had cost his side the victory.
“There are definitely things we have got to improve on,” said Holloway, who had a superb game.
“We have got to look up and see the overlaps and some other decision-making needs to be better.
“Instead of taking a quick-tap penalty and moving it wide, for instance, we should have taken a scrum on their five-metre line.”
He added: “We have a bit of work to do. “We have come away with a losing bonus point but we have to turn these games into wins because we have not had the best of starts to the season.”
Ben King missed two first-half penalties for Tenbury, who took the lead when fly-half Andrew Wilkes touched down for an unconverted try in the 20th minute after a close-range scrum.
Wilkes scored his second try in the 34th minute after a neat chip ahead from King wrong-footed Bromyard’s veteran full-back Roger Dixon and bounced kindly for the fly-half to gather and run through under the posts. King slotted the subsequent conversion. Wilkes almost completed his hat-trick in the second-half but was hauled down a metre short of the line by the strong-tackling Tom Morris, who also raced back to deny King.
Tenbury captain Pete Stevens was relieved his side had withstood Bromyard’s late onslaught to secure a league double and climb to third spot in the table.
“We came here two years ago and lost,” said Stevens.
“We were lucky to get to the break at 12-3 ahead. I think they were the better team in the second half.
“Their forwards were bigger and stronger than us. We gave away some silly penalties and they put us under a lot of pressure.”
Stevens added: “It’s always a tough battle but it feels a very sweet victory.”
MATCH FACTS Bromyard: Dixon, Tom Morris, Cross, Tomkins, Ainge, Rowberry, Ralph; Eversham, Joe Williams, Jamie Williams, Hulburd, Walsh, Cox, Griffiths, Holloway. Replacements: Wain, Roper, James, Harris.
Tenbury: Brittain, Smith, Hayes, Parry, Wozencroft, Wilkes, King; Rob Phillips, Ian Bowkett, Oatley, Will Gough, Stevens, Bridges, Brain, Foster. Replacements: Morgan, Blair, MacBeth, James.
Referee: Iain Morris (Gloucester Society).
Yellow card: Tenbury: Gough, 61 min.
Star man: Andrew Wilkes (Tenbury).