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London Scottish Aim To Make It Three In A Row At Plymouth

London Scottish Aim To Make It Three In A Row At Plymouth

This coming Friday London Scottish will make their longest journey of the playoff campaign, when they travel down to Plymouth Albion for what is expected to be a very bruising and tough encounter.

This coming Friday London Scottish will make their longest journey of the playoff campaign, when they travel down to Plymouth Albion for what is expected to be a very bruising and tough encounter.

MPU

This is Scottish’s third match of the play offs and the team will be looking to maintain their 100% record. With Scottish suffering a 9th minute of injury time loss when they last visited the Brickfield stadium, they will be determined to ensure they come away with a win.

London Scottish make the long trip down to Plymouth Albion on Friday for a 7.45pm kick off for the third encounter of the season with the Devon side. With honours even in the two previous fixtures the third game promises to be a cracker of a match. Scottish will go into this game with confidence gained from achieving three consecutive victories, and a team spirit which is superb. Key to their recent victories had been a tough uncompromising defence which has been bolstered by the return of key players from injury.

Plymouth Albion completed their regular season with a comprehensive loss against fellow Pool C rivals Esher 41 – 7 and with this loss the Devon side approached the play offs with an air of trepidation. This was compounded with a loss in the opening playoff game at Moseley, when although going in at half time with a 12 -6 lead, which was increased to 17 – 6 early in the second period, the Devon outfit was unable to sustain their lead and eventually lost the match 25 – 17. This loss heaped further pressure on the Plymouth side, but their very good home season form came to their rescue when they defeated Esher 18 – 11.
This win was a personal triumph for their full back James Love who through a cameo performance won the match for Plymouth by kicking all his penalty kicks and scored all the Plymouth points in the match. Scottish will need to maintain their discipline and not give away cheap penalties. Scottish will go into this match as clear underdogs given the impressive home record of Albion.
The Devon side have won seven home matches already this season; it is on the road where they have suffered the most.

With this match being a Friday night fixture, those Scottish supporters driving to Plymouth and using their SatNav should enter PL1 4NE into their devices. Non-techies should take the M4/M5 and then the A38. Then approach Plymouth along the A38 until you reach the Mandon intersection which is signposted the A386 City Centre. Follow the A386 towards the City Centre. Follow signs for Torpoint (ferry) A374 along Milehouse Road then Devonport Road through a small shopping area. Shortly after the shopping area there is a mini roundabout turn right into Albert Road. At the next set of traffic lights turn left. Proceed to the next mini roundabout and carry straight on following signs for the City Centre and signed posted as the A374. Within 400 metres there is a yellow AA sign indicating the left turn into Madden Road for Brickfields Recreation Ground. For those making the journey down by train from Paddington, the journey will take approximately three hours and you will need to catch the 1506hrs train to ensure that you will get to the ground for the kick off.

C’mon you Scottish
 

Scottish Lose out in the South West

Scottish Lose out in the South West

Fortunately for a number of London Scottish fans, Friday evening away games are difficult to attend due to work and family commitments. For those who managed to wrangle an early release from the office and make the journey down to Plymouth, they were rewarded with a fine display of committed, dominant, aggressive rugby.

Fortunately for a number of London Scottish fans, Friday evening away games are difficult to attend due to work and family commitments. For those who managed to wrangle an early release from the office and make the journey down to Plymouth, they were rewarded with a fine display of committed, dominant, aggressive rugby.

MPU

London Scottish fielded a much changed XV from the side which had produced impressive performances against Esher and Moseley. It was on the back of these two performances that Scottish took the field with confidence.

Plymouth, in front of a vocal crowd of 1700, took the game to Scottish from the off, using relentless forward pressure to establish a firm foothold in the Scottish half. Building on an abundance of early pressure thanks to a stuttering Scottish lineout which failed to win ball from their own throw, Plymouth managed to progress deep into the Scottish 22 and force an inside ball to their hooker who barged his way over for the first of Albion's 4 tries, 5-0 to Plymouth after 7 minutes.

After a shallow re-start Plymouth recovered possession and promptly used the boot to push Scottish back deep into their own half. A tactic of trying to kick our way out of our half was adopted and Plymouth, with an accurate lineout, was able to maintain possession for an extended period of time.

It was off a combination of direct running teamed with solid support play that Plymouth's forwards began to inch their way up field and after a sustained period of possession managed to bag their second 5 pointer of the evening taking the score to 12 – 0.

Resuming a tactic of playing the ball at all times in Scottish's half and with an absence of Josh Brown and Alex Clarke the Scottish set piece started to struggle. The Scottish scrum was penalised 10 yards inside the Scottish half and Albion's kicker slotted a penalty to take the lead to 15-0 nearing the half time interval.

The second half saw some key changes that sparked a resurgence from Scottish. Ollie Grove came on to fly half replacing James Brown and immediately started to utilise the possession that ever hard working Adam Kleeburger, Scottish's best forward on the night, was managing to secure..

Early second half action saw Ryan Westren cut through a number of Albion defenders to make good in-roads deep into the opposition 22 and for a period Scottish were looking like the form team. The play however broke down and Plymouth managed to recover to attack deep into Scottish territory where after sustained pick and drive rugby, the ball was fed to fullback Tu'ipluotu who scored under the sticks to move Albion on to 22 points to the visitors nil.

A few changes to the Scottish pack saw Ollie Hayes come on at hooker and Adam MacKenzie replace Aaron Liffchak at tighthead, both replacements made an immediate impact in lifting the intensity and work rate of the Scottish pack and crucially putting the set piece on the go forward.

Strong attacking forays into Albion's half gave Grove a chance to roll the dice and opt for a cross field kick into the Plymouth in-goal but the kick went long and Agustin Gosio was unable to make the touchdown.

From the re-start Plymouth climbed back in the driving seat and again pushed Scottish back over the wrong side of half way with good runs from Tyson Lewis and outside centre Bailey. More pressure saw a penalty conceded and Albion went for the lineout option and the crucial 4th try, on securing the ball Albion marched the catch and drive 5 meters to see Aaron Carpenter score wide out Love converted to go up 32 nil with 66 minutes played.

It was at this point that Augstin “Gus” Gosio hard work and flare saw him snatch an intercept, run a great line evading would be defenders and score under the posts. Score was converted.

Plymouth weren't yet done and James Love poked over a penalty in extra time to ensure Albion took maximum for and against points on top of their 5 playoff points, both of which may prove crucial in deciding who's for the drop.

Augstin “Gus” Gosio was awarded the Jock Meikle sponsored away supporters Man of the Match award.
 

 

 

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