Stourbridge Lions 32 - 10 Sutton Coldfield

THE Lions' home game against Sutton Coldfield was preceded by a minute's silence to mark the death of coach John Hope.

The match started with early scores, a penalty by by Tom Mitchell after two minutes was countered by a Sutton try almost immediately for an early 5-3 lead.

A sweeping move from a scrum on 10 minutes saw Cass Brookes break through on to a pass from Rhys Williams and feed Will King for an easy touchdown, converted by Mitchell for a 10-5 lead.

The Lions were never significantly threatened after that.

A second Lions try came two minutes later with a break from the lineout through Williams leading to a brisk passing move right and George Tildesley outflanking the last defenders to touch down.

Sutton constantly pressed and competed at the breakdown throughout the game, with their outside backs prominent, but the game was effectively wrapped up shortly after Tildesley’s try when Scotty Langdon powered over from 30 metres wide on the right and moved to the posts after a cross-kick from Williams by-passed the cover.

The conversion from Mitchell and a further penalty score after 30 minutes left the home side 25-5 up at the break.

The second half started with substantial pressure from Sutton, compounded by the home side giving away several penalties.

Sutton chose to run them rather than kick for goal and their reward was a try after 50 minutes. At that point it looked as if there could be a serious revival – the Lions gave away over a dozen second half penalties – but gradually the home outfit exerted more pressure over the remaining minutes.

Twenty minutes from time they ended the scoring with a well-taken try by Cass Brookes. A lineout just outside the away 22 saw Rhys Williams give a show and go to break through, then showing fine judgement to put Brookes over for the inevitable conversion from Mitchell to make the final score 32-10.

Meanwhile Stourbridge Grasshoppers travelled away to Merit table Division 2 leaders Old Yardleians thirds where they produced a scintillating 26-12 victory.