Dunstablians dish up first win in Market Harborough

Market Harborough v Dunstablians. Photos by Reece Bowles. wk 44.Market Harborough v Dunstablians. Photos by Reece Bowles. wk 44.
Market Harborough v Dunstablians. Photos by Reece Bowles. wk 44.
Midlands Two East South: Market Harborough 22 Dunstablians 30

Dunstablians continued their recent run of form as they ground out a 30-22 victory at Market Harborough in Midlands Two East South on Saturday.

Dees had previously failed to get a result in Market Harborough, but played some of their finest rugby so far this season to score three tries in the first 30 minutes.

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The Dunstablians pack set-up a good platform for the backs to attack.

Both scrum and line out were functioning well, particularly in the strong wind across the pitch and the backs looked dangerous in attack.

The first try came when prop Shaun Mangan broke down the blindside and captain Stuart Hall took his off-load and beat the covering defender to score, with Joe Murphy converting.

The away side continued to press and from a lineout on the Harborough 22 Dees’ forwards kept the ball tight as they edged their way to the line with a number of rucks.

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Stuart Calder was on hand to bulldoze his way over the line, outmuscling two defenders to touch down, as Murphy’s conversion attempt drifted narrowly wide in the strong wind.

An injury to number eight Tom Evans meant Dees had to reshuffle the pack as Harry Barter came on at flanker and Sam Coogan anchored the scrum.

The youngster then did well to draw a defender and got his pass way under pressure to Gavin Denning in space to score an unconverted try in the corner.

Good off the ball work from Coogan saw him disrupt a Harborough attack to win turnover ball which was spread wide, but errors with the final pass thwarted the visitors.

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Murphy moved Dees further ahead with a penalty, before the home side put together some decent phases in the last five minutes and finally crossed wide on the right to make it 20-5 at oranges.

Harborough scored twice in quick succession after the break. For the first they spread the ball wide before touching down a chip and chase and their forward runners saw them register a third try.

Under pressure Dees looked to regain control and strong defence forced the a turnover.

Jordan Warner kicked through the loose ball and skilfully collected the ball as it bounced up as the speedy winger outpaced the covering defenders to score under the posts, with Murphy converting to make it 27-15.

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The home side continued to apply pressure and notched a converted try when their quick-thinking lock scampered through untouched from a five-metre ruck.

An entertaining last 10 minutes saw both teams battle it out for victory and, with the clock ticking down, Dees forwards forced a penalty which Murphy kick with ease to secure victory.

Dees defended well and forced a knock-on to finally seal the bonus point win.

Dees host unbeaten Newbold on Avon on Saturday.

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