Birmingham Moseley 15 - 11 Rotherham
Second half tries from Aaron Crofts and Oli Morris steered Birmingham Moseley to a come-from-behind 15-11 National One home win over Rotherham Titans.
The hosts trailed 3-11 at the end of an opening 40 minutes during which Lewis Wilson crossed for the visitors while former Moseley fly half Sam Hollingsworth added two penalties.
Ben Palmer had kicked the home side’s only points before the break, and he also added a conversion during a second period in which the Red-and-Blacks held Rotherham scoreless.
This result leaves Moseley jointly in second place in the table after five rounds of action, alongside Rosslyn Park and Cinderford. All three clubs trail leaders Richmond by four points.
The contest was barely out of the starting blocks when Rotherham claimed the only try of the first 40 minutes.
The visitors’ midfield loop released full back Sam Allan on halfway from where he galloped to the base of the home posts. Although Moseley eventually dragged him down, visiting flanker Wilson was on hand to regather and score.
Titans’ prop Harry Whitfield was then held up in goal before Hollingsworth split the uprights from 30 metres when referee Roberts returned for an earlier Moseley high tackle.
A series of forward carries then took play into the visitors’ territory for a sustained spell, and when Rotherham infringed on the ground Palmer drilled over a 22-metre penalty.
The Titans twice used the slope to good effect to take play into the home 22 where they won a penalty on the ground which Hollingsworth translated into three points with a well-struck kick.
This left Rotherham with an eight-point interval advantage which the hosts soon cut by seven thanks to Crofts’ first try of the season.
The lock powered over from close range after Palmer planted a penalty won by a long spell of Moseley continuity accurately to the corner.
The home No.10 also converted, and the hosts then took the lead for the first time soon after a dangerous Rotherham move was stopped deep in the home 22 by a forward pass.
Worcester Warriors’ academy centre Morris claimed the touchdown after breaking a number of tackles following a flowing multi-phase handling move.
The hosts played some flowing attacking rugby in the fourth quarter, but three times failed to apply the finishing touch which would have made the points secure.
When Jonny Arr broke from his own five-metre line, Mason Tonks burst to halfway before quick hands released Aquile Smith down the left. But with the try-of-the-season award beckoning, Cliffie Hodgson narrowly failed to hold the winger’s out of the tackle scoring pass.
Morgan Dawes was then unable to hang on to Kieran Joyce’s offload when under heavy pressure on Rotherham’s tryline.
And when Morris escaped down the right, his scoring pass to Tonks again went to ground.
This meant the visitors had one last opportunity when they put a penalty into the home 22, but Moseley’s defence held firm to deliver a third consecutive home win.