Birmingham Moseley secure bonus point in the rain
by Paul Smith
A late Aquile Smith try ensured Birmingham Moseley left rain-lashed Rosslyn Park with a losing bonus point.
The visitors had earlier been awarded a penalty try, while Cliffie Hodgson’s first outing with the kicking tee returned nine points.
Back-rower Dan Laventure, fly half Greg Lound and replacement hooker Owen Hughes touched down for the hosts, who led 14-6 at the break.
After eight rounds of action, Adam Balding’s team lie fifth in the National One table, while Park retain their grip on second place, now five points ahead of the Red-and-Blacks and three behind leaders Richmond.
Moseley lost prop James Tideswell to the sinbin following the concession of a number of early penalties.
However, the visitors defended resolutely with 14 men and as a result the contest had entered the second quarter before Rosslyn Park put the first points on the board. These took the form of a Laventure try, well converted by Lound
Back-to-back penalties from Hodgson closed the gap to a single point only for Park to claim a second try two minutes before the break
Former Coventry lock Greg Gillanders was the provider, offloading neatly to Lound who scored beneath the posts.
Joe Munro’s conversion left the visitors facing a 14-6 interval deficit, but the visitors were soon back within range after Hodgson slotted his third successful penalty.
And Moseley had the lead for the first time just ahead of the hour mark when their front row’s powerful scrummaging forced the award of a penalty try.
However, Park wrestled back the initiative when Craig Holland twice split the uprights with well-struck penalties.
And with visiting hooker Pete Austin kicking his heels in the sinbin, the home side stretched their lead when Hughes applied the finishing touch to a lineout drive.
Pacy winger Smith’s eighth try in as many league outings was a simple finish from a perfectly-weighted Hodgson kick pass, but the closing eight minutes failed to deliver the match-clinching score which would have delivered a second away win of the campaign.
Rosslyn Park: Robinson, Marfo, Cheeseman, Munro, Edwards, Lound, Gash; Traynor, Vaughan-Edwards, Doran-Jones, Twomey, Gillanders, Laventure, A Ellis, H Ellis. Reps: Hughes, Lovell, Spencer, Lewis, Holland.
Birmingham Moseley: O’Brien, Smith, Morris, Fatiaki, Davetanivalu, Hodgson, Arr; Foreman, Auston, Tideswell, Crofts, Wright, Monks, Dawes, Le Roux. Reps: Tanner, Titchard-Jones, Stephens, Jolly, Tonks.
Tries: Laventure, Round, Hughes.
Cons: Lound, Munro, Holland
Pen: Holland (2)
Tries: Smith, Penalty Try
Pens: Hodgson (3)
Half-time: Rosslyn Park 14-6 Birmingham Moseley