Wood kicks Barkers Butts to ensure full points for Walsall

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By Walsall Advertiser | Friday, December 14, 2012, 09:20

BARKERS BUTTS 25 WALSALL 36

WALSALL took maximum points last weekend after once again they came out in top of a high scoring affair.

Both teams scored five tries, but Walsall's Matt Wood ensured that his team would come away with the win after converting four and adding a penalty.

The visitors seemed to be in control of the game for long periods. But they were guilty of committing basic errors that gifted their host's possession, which resulted in tries.

Walsall were 12-0 up after 15 minutes, as captain Steve Halbert supported Daniel Simpson for the first try and a sweeping attack involving Weston, Hughes and Williamson resulted in winger Paul Naylor running in a good try from 20 meters with Matt Wood adding the conversion.

Barkers hit back immediately as a lineout catch and drive was followed by some quick passing which resulted in winger Knight crossing in the corner.

The hosts scored again within a minute as a long downfield kick caused confusion in the Walsall defence and fly-half Howland followed up to score near the posts.

Five minutes later Knight got his second try as the visitors were slow to react to a quickly taken lineout throw and the Coventry team moved the ball quickly with the winger finishing off the 60 meter attack.

Just on the half-hour the home team completed a remarkable comeback as scrum half Palmer scored their fourth try after Walsall had spilled a pass on the halfway line.

The closing minutes of the half saw the visitors regain control of the game and Wood put over a penalty and converted a Mark Reeves try after a prolonged period of pressure, which saw centres Wootton and Weston make some good line breaks and Halbert, Benson and Hughes make some excellent ball carries. These scores gave Walsall a 22-20 lead at the interval.

This pattern of play was repeated throughout most of the second half, but on several occasions Walsall failed to keep control of the ball or were guilty of indiscipline at crucial moments.

But, further scores seemed inevitable, and it was a Halbert run and pass that saw Wootton make a powerful burst to break through from 20 meters for the next try.

The team's final score came ten minutes later as Halbert and scrum half Lloyd linked up before releasing the ball to Jeffrey Williamson.

The young winger showed good speed and awareness to cross wide out. But Wood still had no problem with yet another conversion.

The hosts got a late score when captain Scanlon went over after a series of drives, when the visitors had lock forward Benson in the sinbin.

This Saturday, Camp Hill are the visitors to Delves Road.

The game kicks off at 2.15

The United had a quite incredible win at Wolverhampton.

They were forced to take the field with only 13 players, but still managed to win their game 33-22. Jack Crowhurst scored two tries. One each for Jamie and Josh Hickman and Andy Field. Andy Hawkins kicked four conversions. This Saturday will be a match between the top two in the Reserve League when they travel to play Dudley Kingswinford.

Meanwhile, the third XV lost their merit table game against a very strong Tamworth team. They never recovered from a poor start and eventually lost 26-17. Phil Stanley was on the scoresheet again with two tries.

David Wild scored the other with James Quigley getting a conversion late on for the third team.

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