DUDLEY Kingswinford were dreadful for the opening 20 minutes of their local derby with Bromsgrove.
But after gifting Bromsgrove a 21-0 lead through poor organisation and tackling, the DK’s got their act together and could have clinched victory from a compelling contest after losing out 32-25 - writes Nick Pullen.
The DKs were able to add a second Stourbridge loanee to their line up with Ashley Oyekan slotting in at inside centre while veteran flanker Ian Langford returned to action after 18 months absence.
In addition, DK’s have recruited former Cinderford player Tomas Scrivens, who has moved into the area and was named on the bench.
They also welcomed back influential coach Pete Knight, who has missed the past five games with a knee injury.
A horrendous start by DKs saw Bromsgrove run in three quick tries through Phil Horton, Ollie Bache and Worcester Academy player George De Cothi, who proved a real handful for DIK’s with his blistering pace.
Jon Critchlow converted all three tries as Bromsgrove built a healthy 21-0 lead.
DKs finally got going following this opening onslaught and pushed Bromsgrove back up field where Oyekan crossed the try-line but was judged not to have grounded the ball.
Boosted by this, DKs did score, former Bromsgrove prop Steve Blackburn forcing his way over but fly half Gareth Bown missed the conversion.
Bromsgrove then bagged a bonus point try when the dangerous De Cothi sprinted fully 40 yards to score and give his side a 26-5 lead at the break.
The game turned when Bromsgrove were reduced to 14 players for the third quarter as first hooker George Glenn and then prop Kevin Salisbury were sent to the sin-bin.
DKs seized their chance to get back in the game. First Bown and Critchlow swopped penalties before DKs claimed tries through flanker Luke Greenwood and Oyekan.
A third try from scrum half Connah Jones, converted by Bown, brought the DKs right back into contention with the score at 29-25.
Further DKs pressure failed to produce a further score and it was Bromsgrove who had the last word when Critchlow landed a late penalty.
The DKs host Harrogate this Saturday (3pm).