Report by Stourbridge Lions

Stourbridge Lions hosted Sutton Coldfield in a key local clash at the bottom end of the table and subsided to a 25-15 defeat to a more committed side.

25-5 down with 15 minutes to go they hauled themselves back into it with 2 late tries but failed to get the losing bonus point and saw Sutton gain maximum points for a 4 try performance.

Early on it seemed that the Lions, without Elliot Murphy who was injured before kick-off, and a number of other key players, had the edge; the scrum was going well and the lineout functioning effectively.

Indeed, they soaked up some pressure and then scored a try down the left from a move finished by George Tildesley.

All seemed set fair for a win but Sutton gradually gained the upper hand around the fringes of ruck and maul, scoring around 10 minutes later and going 7-5 up.

They confirmed this near half-time with a penalty goal in front of the posts.

Two quick away tries early in the 2nd half, both within a couple of minutes of each other, seemed to be it, the second try after a mistake that gave the Sutton 10 a clear run down the Stour left.

Despite huge pressure from the home attack, nothing seemed to stick and when Sutton scored their 4th try 20 minutes into the half it was done and dusted.

However, the Lions did rouse themselves and with the referee at carding 2 Sutton players for persistent infringing on the ground, 2 quick, unconverted tries, the second from Fred Brookes, who had his usual energetic game, made the score respectable.

It was too little, too late though and Sutton’s win now leave the Lions near the bottom with much to do.

It was a frustrating afternoon, with the Lions being given 24 penalties for constant infringement by Sutton, 16 in the 2nd half alone, but no cards were shown until the last 10 minutes.

However, they must overcome these setbacks if the Lions are to prevail in Mids 1 this season.