Birmingham Civil Service 33 Alcester 19
Midlands Five West (South)
ALCESTER made a disappointing start to life in this division on Saturday as they lost out to their Birmingham opponents, who also suffered relegation last season, but have regrouped in the summer to record a second successive league win.
The home side seemed to want the game more than the visitors although the game was finely poised until the last 15 minutes when the home side pulled clear. Until then it was anyone’s game but the home side’s greater intensity exploited Alcester’s defensive frailties to cross the line four times.
Civil Service started well and took a 5-0 lead early on. Man of the match Jamie Clarke then responded for Alcester by smashing through the midfield defence to score under the posts and fly half Glyn Smith converted to put the visitors 7-5 up.
In a tight first half, Civil Service scored a penalty just before half time to lead 8-7 at the break.
The Birmingham men scored first in the second half to make it 15-7, before Alcester skipper Jack Green continued his excellent early season try-scoring form to register his fourth try in four games and narrow the deficit to 15-12.
The home side then upped their game and scored a try and two penalties without response to give them a commanding 28-12 lead, although the visitors managed to claw their way back into it with a try in the corner from Ryan Clark to make it 28-19 following Smith’s second successful conversion of the game.
Clark came close to scoring his second try five minutes later but the referee judged he failed to ground the ball as he dived over in the same corner.
That was Alcester’s last chance and Civil Service went up the other end late on to score their final try of the match and seal the win.
Alcester handed a debut to teenager Ant D’Amico at prop as well as a first league start for Rikki Bowers.
Alcester are in friendly action this weekend when Malvern 3rds are the visitors to Kings Coughton for a 3pm kick-off. The next league game is at home to Birmingham Exiles on October 11.
Seconds brushed aside
ALCESTER 2nds had little answer to a strong and experienced Spartans 4ths who prevailed 64-5 at Kings Coughton.
The home side gave a senior start to Ed Goddard, son of club chairman Pete, on the flank and he performed well and was his usual energetic self until he had a bang on the head in the second half and had to leave the field.
The first half was competitive with the visitors leading 19-0 at the break through three tries and two conversions, with Alcester’s best scoring chance coming from the boot of veteran scrum half Paul Taylor, who dragged his kick wide.
With the slope at their back in the second half, the visitors took complete control to run in a further seven tries, with the home side’s frustrations compounded with the yellow-carding of skipper Ben Lunnon.
They had a rare moment to cheer midway through the half when Sam Fell crossed for Alcester, but this was the visitors’ day and they ran out clear and deserved winners.