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Stourbridge 12 Bromsgrove 21
1:10pm Tuesday 22nd January 2013 in Stourbridge RFC
STOURBRIDGE saw their hopes of a perfect season evaporate with derby defeat to Bromsgrove.
After a large number of volunteers helped clear the Stourton Park pitch of snow, the Saxons failed to repay their efforts, with uncharacteristically poor execution in attack and a raft of territory and possession conceded through penalties.
Bromsgrove defended like men possessed and were worth their win, inflicting defeat on a Stourbridge side who had won all previous 19 league fixtures.
Stour got an early taste of their own medicine when Bromsgrove flanker Chris McGregor caught them cold with a try from a driving maul.
Outside-half Jon Critchlow slotted the conversion and further extended the lead shortly after with a penalty coughed up by a Saxons defence lacking its usual discipline.
The hosts hit back on the half hour mark when a neat Sione Tu'ipolotu inside pass put Will Hurrell through to score.
But a technical infringement cost Robbie Hurrell 10 minutes in the sin bin and disaster struck when a misunderstanding let in Bromsgrove winger Charles Jones for the visitors’ second try.
Things got even worse when backchat advanced a penalty into kickable distance and Critchlow struck again on the stroke of halftime.
Drew Harper scored his 20th try of the campaign from a 15 metre scrum drive to give the Saxons hope early in the second period.
But despite putting considerable pressure on the Bromsgrove line, they couldn’t breach it further and instead it was Bromsgrove extended their lead through an Alex Woodward penalty.
Coach Mike Umaga commented: "It wasn't the best of days for us. Credit of course to the volunteers who got the game on and to Bromsgrove who showed a lot of desire and executed the basics well, something we failed to do.
“There's still a lot of rugby to play this season though and I'm sure this group of players will bounce back.”