Having moved up a league this year the UoB Womens Rugby 1st team are looking to keep up their standard of play against fresh rivals. With the team currently second from the bottom after 4 games and Northumbria in 3rd place after 3 games, it was safe to say the game was going to be a challenge for Birmingham.
During the first 5 minutes of the game, Northumbria maintained the majority of the possession in Birmingham’s half with several knock-ons by Birmingham unnecessary giving away the ball their rivals. Northumbria soon capitalised on this with the first try of the game by their fullback giving us a starting score of 5-0 despite a missed conversion.
The first half of the game continued the same way with the Lions constantly on the defence against a noticeably quicker side who managed to maintain their position in Birmingham’s half. The second try of the game went to Northumbria’s fly half and the 3rd to their winger after line out for Northumbria resulting from a kick from a scrum near the try line. This was quickly followed by 2 more tries by Northumbria leading to a score of 25-0.
With no successful conversions thus far, the Northumbria fly half made up with an impressive run from the centre through the Birmingham line and past the backs to score the 5th try of the game. This was followed by the first conversion of the game giving a score of 32-0 that was boosted to 37-0 by a final try by the Northumbria fly half before half time was called.
The start of the second half brought a determined Birmingham side back to the pitch to try and gain a bonus point for the game in the form of 4 tries. However, Northumbria soon capitalised on the half time rest, scoring yet another successful try and boosting the score to 44-0. This spurred on the Lions who managed to maintain possession in Northumbria’s half for the first time this game after a brilliant run from their fly half and determined pushing by the rest. This resulted in a brilliant try from the Lion’s number 20 with a successful conversion giving the side their first points of the game. Despite the boost in moral for UoB, Northumbria were quick to retaliate with 4 more tries before the final whistle was blown leading to a final score line of 72-7. This was Birmingham’s with their biggest loss of the season so far.
Altough a hard loss to take, Birmingham played well under constant bombardment throughout the game by the better drilled and quicker Northumbrian side. Dropped balls and penalties were the result of many of the breakthrough runs by the rival side which a tired Birmingham team were not able to catch. Despite this, the Lions showed great promise for the rest of the season with some brilliant plays and a couple of great breakthrough runs throughout the game.