Match Report by Sam Bradley
Shattered Sils help keep BB in the league
By Sam Bradley
A huge crowd had gathered at the Berkswell & Balsall Rugby Club for the game of the season so far.
Sils needed 3 points from a win, and BB also needed a win to help them refute relegation from this league.
The crowd weathered the storm, and as the teams strolled onto the pitch the rain stopped and out came the sun.
Sils started extremely strong with a great try in the first two minutes from Matt Lee and converted by Steve Hawkins, giving them the advantage early on. 0-7.
BB came back with some pressure from the scrum on 15 meter line but Sils took possession and kicked out.
A further scrum was pitched right under the posts in Sils half after a trying play by both teams, but BB secure a try after turning the scrum to give them advantage. Six minutes of play, scores 5-7.
Strong re-start from BB puts Sils under further pressure but they continued to hold their line and take BB forwards down heavy, and another scrum on 15 meter line in BB half put Sils back in control.
A superb interception by Nick Powell and push forward, as he passed to Harry Law who ran fast through three defenders but was taken down hard after 15 meters.
Sils receive the first penalty of the game as BB penalised for not releasing and to Sils delight it was right under the posts. No hesitation for Steve Hawkins as he kicked to put Sils further in front. 5-10.
A strong re-start but an enthralling scrum on the centre line gives BB the opportunity to once again turn the scrum and give them advantage. From this BB score a further try putting the scores level 10-10.
Sils newcomer Stefan Detounis makes the starting line up this week playing flank, and showed his skill with a brilliant capture and kick forward to push Sils further into BB half, followed by an excellent nudge from Steve Hawkins to corner.
BB response was a kick straight back to centre line, but Nick Powell scooped the ball and made a huge run but lost possession after a moment of indecision.
Play is strong, and it is apparent that the passion to win is driving both teams as BB found a gap and made their run, Sils chase them down and secure a penalty as the pressure forces an error as BB take ball from offside position.
Another great kick by Steve Hawkins to put further three points on the board.
As BB nudge the ball Captain Peter Nicholls takes possession and runs smoothly through defenders passing to Tom Lee who kicked out.
BB made a couple of forced errors from the pressure applied by Sils, and gave away another penalty. Scores 10-13 with 16 minutes in the first half left.
Stefan Detounis jumps high to catch the ball as BB re-start but fumbles slightly and is bought to the ground hard.
Several minutes later a further penalty awarded to Sils gives them the lead they were hoping for. Score 10-16 and all to play for.
The fatigue is showing in this half, as both teams continue to do battle. Tom Lee pulls on the line and after a scrum BB show their wheeling skills once again.
BB had possession and as the run is made the crowd is in uproar, but is short lived as Sils seize and take down.
After a line out is called back because the ball was passed back in the 22 BB continue to drive, but Sils defend exceptionally well and keep them out.
Sils keep BB off the line for several minutes but after an illegal infraction at the ruck, a penalty try is given on the whistle of half time. Sils trailing 17-16.
As the second half gets underway its obvious the penalty try awarded on the whistle has rattled Sils as they came out messy and their passing through the line was weak.
A knock on gave possession away and BB took full advantage. Following another wheeling scrum on 10 meter line BB are given penalty in front of the posts as Nick Powell is deemed offside. Nine minutes into the second half, Sils behind 20-16.
The 120 spectators look on as both teams desperately need this win, and tensions are running high as a number of players collide on the pitch. Tackling is brutal by BB but Sils keep possession.
Ollie Trace was bought down heavy from the line out as he gave a great 10 meter sprint and the pickup from Matt Lee pushed Sils further forward, but play was called back after a knock on and penalty to BB.
Play was fast and furious as Matt Bacon pushed hard and another great run by Matt Lee took Sils further into BB half, and as the run continued BB player is sin binned after repeated offenses to the dismay of the BB crowd.
Lee Jones made a great interception and pass to keep Sils moving forward, but a forward pass is called back.
Sils continued to push hard and keep BB out of their half but as the final whistle blew, Sils knew they had spent all their energy and BB defending had worked to keep them out of the scoring. Final scores 23-16 to BB.
Sils have to put this game behind them and look to their home game this Saturday, where they meet Burton.
Their previous match saw them beat Burton by two points after an outstanding game was played. Kick off 3 pm at Copt Heath.