Super sub South seals a superb Luton win

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A match-winning performance by Craig South saw Luton RFC win 23-17 at Barking in London One North on Saturday.

The substitute was on the field for less than an hour, but bagged himself two tries to guide Luton to a second consecutive away victory.

Despite a strong showing from Barking fly-half Benjamin Lloyd, the home side were forced to finish the game with just 14 men after Kane Bennett was sent off for a vicious stamp.

Barking, who prior to the game had won six matches from their last eight, were out for revenge following a narrow 31-24 defeat earlier this season at Newlands Road.

However, Luton took heart from recent away performances, as from the kick-off 
Jack Elston won a turnover, which resulted in a penalty, for Rik Hobbs to dispatch, giving the away side a fifth minute lead.

Both teams started to settle and Barking broke forward in a rare attack in the 15th minute to score a try through Darren Bowles. Lloyd followed up with the conversion to give the home team a 7-3 lead.

Barking found themselves on the ropes again though as Luton won two penalties in succession.

The first in the 25th minute saw Hobbs cannon off the post, though a minute later he got it right, kicking successfully for a 7-6 scoreline.

In the 32nd minute, South replaced debutant Max Edwards, and was on the pitch for just 90 seconds before seizing the opportunity to burst through a broken defence to score.

Hobbs converted to give Luton a 13-7 interval lead.

Following the break Barking retook the advantage through Lloyd, scoring a try and adding the extras to make it 14-13.

But a 64th minute rush of blood from Bennett saw him sent off for a stamp to the head of a Luton player.

It got worse for the home side in the 70th minute, as South scored his second try, following tenacious play and quick thinking by Tom Mahendran.

He chased a kick deep in to the Barking half, which was cleared to the touch five metres from the try line.

Grabbing the ball and taking a quick line-out, he found the advancing South who muscled his way over in the corner to score, but Hobbs failed with the conversion.

Lloyd scored a consolation penalty in the final minute for Barking, but Luton held on.

Following the victory, head coach Darren Moore praised new boy Edwards as he said: “Max showed how good he is with his strong running, especially between the lines. Hopefully, we’ll have him back in time for next week.”

This weekend, Luton host Old Priorians.