Luctonians bounce back after four-game losing run to beat Bromsgrove in National Two North (From Hereford Times)
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Luctonians bounce back after four-game losing run to beat Bromsgrove in National Two North
12:02pm Wednesday 25th December 2013 in Sport
After a disappointing four-game National Two North losing run, Luctonians finished 2013 in style with a thrilling 24-5 victory over a tough Bromsgrove side.
With the league now taking a break for Christmas - Luctonians' next game is not until January 4 away at Harrogate - it was key to end the year on a high as director of rugby Alex Davidson explained.
“We had highlighted this one as a possible turning point at the end of the difficult run of games, playing the top four in the space of five weeks, getting things going again and end the year in a positive manner," said the former Birmingham and Solihull forward.
"I thought the forwards were excellent today, it’s something that we’ve been working hard to achieve all season really.
"Richard Jones has been slowly coming back from a long-term injury and today it clicked as he showed the level of performance that we know he can achieve and that made a big difference.
"Scrum ball and set piece ball is, as much as the game is changing, still key and then we got front foot possession and went on from there.”
The Luctonians pack has not always had the best of times this season, as hooker Chris Condliffe explained, but following Saturday’s game the forwards performance seems to be firing on all cylinders again.
“We’ve always had massive unity in the pack and have a strong belief in each other that we could get it going again and today we did," he said.
"I think it important to come out after a tight first half and really dominate the set piece.
"I don’t think we’ve been doing it for our backs for a few weeks now so it’s great to give them a performance today, every time there was a set piece we were confident of winning it, whether it was our ball or the oppositions.
"The thing now is to enjoy the Christmas break and come back with the same strength, the same intensity in our performances.
"If we do that, there’s no reason why we can’t be sitting comfortably in the top 10 when the season ends.”
There is no reason to doubt Condliffe’s sentiments after the impressive victory over Bromsgrove when Luctonians totally overran their opponents in the closing stages, scoring four tries in the process.
The first three-quarters of the game were close and tight with both sides trying to dominate proceedings.
But, on the hour-mark with score 5-5 after Adam Knight had gone over for the home team, something clicked for the Mortimer Park club and, from then on, the forwards stole the show.
Condliffe was the first to go over, picking the ball up from the base of a maul and driving over the try line. The third score followed 10 minutes later as the referee awarded Luctonians a penalty try.
Knight’s second try, three minutes before the end, rubber-stamped an excellent performance and added the bonus point in the process.