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Resilient Scots too strong for Rotherham at Clifton Lane

Resilient Scots too strong for Rotherham at Clifton Lane

London Scottish produced an impressive away performance to leave Clifton Lane with a morale-boosting and deserved 22-17 win over Rotherham Titans.

London Scottish produced an impressive away performance to leave Clifton Lane with a morale-boosting and deserved 22-17 win over Rotherham Titans.

A brace of tries from Aaron Morris, as well as one from Peter Lydon proved to be enough, as the Scots won their first match since mid February in the Greene King IPA Championship. 


Scottish started brightly and had a number of opportunities to take the lead. Alec Coombes nearly opened the scoring just before the 15 minute mark, but the winger was hauled down just short of the try-line.

Just four minutes later a Scottish rolling maul seemed to be heading towards the line with a try beckoning, but the ball was knocked on and the wait for a score went on.

Despite the Scots impressing early on it was the hosts that went in front, with the first points of the afternoon after half an hour. 

Scottish had possession in the midfield, and Lydon threw a pass which was intercepted by Michael Keating. The winger was able to use his pace to run clear and score, and the try was converted by Will Robinson to give the Titans a 7-0 lead. 

The Scots responded brilliantly with two tries in as many minutes to take a deserved lead before half-time. Aaron Morris scored both, with almost identical finishes in the left hand corner. 

The first was after the Scots had sustained pressure in the Rotherham 22, and the ball was spread out wide. Robbie Fergusson looked to have scored but was just inches short, and Morris was just behind to dot down in the corner.

Two minutes later the full-back was over the line again. A five metre lineout, which was functioning well from David Cherry gave Scottish a huge opportunity, and the ball was spun wide early leaving a huge overlap, giving Morris a clear run-in to slide over the line. Lydon’s touchline conversion gave the Scots a 12-7 lead at the break, and also took him past the 200 point mark for the 15/16 season. 

Rotherham pushed to get back in to the lead in the early stages of the second half, but the Scottish defence held firm. A break of the line looked to have given them an opportunity, but as they headed towards the 22 a crucial tap tackle from Mark Bright stopped the danger. 

Will Robinson did cut the gap to just two points after 50 minutes, but straight away Peter Lydon slotted a penalty to make the score 10-15 with just under half an hour to play. 

Lydon gave the Scots some breathing space on the hour mark with an interception try. The Titans had possession around half-way, but the fly-half saw a pass and gathered the ball, showing plenty of pace to clear the defence and score under the posts. His conversion gave his side a decisive 12 point lead. 

Lee Millar nearly put the game beyond doubt with 10 minutes left. The ball was loose and the Scot pounced on the ball but was brought down in the 22. His offload led to a knock-on, with the chance then disappearing. 

The hosts got back in to the match in the 74th minute. Keating’s second try of the match saw him cut inside from the left and evade the defence to sprint clear. Robinson’s successful conversion gave them hope of salvaging a late victory.

Rotherham had plenty of possession in the final minutes including a scrum deep in the Scottish 22, but the Scots held out with some admirable defence. George Horne smashed the ball in to touch with the clock dead, securing a memorable victory at Clifton Lane. 

There is now just one match left for Scottish in the 15/16 Greene King IPA Championship season, and they head to Billesley Common next Saturday to face Moseley. There are still places available on the supporters bus, for more information email john.hewitt@londonscottish.com

Rotherham Titans:
15 Will Goodwin, 14 Michael Keating, 13 Will Owen, 12 Joe Barker, 11 Jamie Broadley, 10 Will Robinson, 9 Andy Davies, 1 Toby Williams, 2 Darran Harris, 3 Lewis Thiede, 4 Josh Redfern, 5 Barney Maddison (c), 6 Ali Birch, 7 Jack Preece, 8 Willie Ryan.

16 George Edgson, 17 Michael Cromie, 18 Mark Tampin, 19 Adam Sinclair, 20 Max Argyle, 21 Luke Carter, 22 Sean Scanlon.  

Tries: Michael Keating (30, 73 minutes)
Conversions: Will Robinson (30, 73 minutes)
Penalty: Will Robinson (50 minutes)

London Scottish:
15 Aaron Morris 14 Alec Coombes 13 Robbie Fergusson 12 Harry Sheppard (replaced by Lee Millar) 11 Jason Harries 10 Peter Lydon 9 Matt Heeks (replaced by George Horne) 1 Jack Cosgrove (replaced by Kurt Schonert) 2 David Cherry (replaced by Tyrone Moran) 3 Matt Shields (replaced by Jimmy Litchfield) 4 Rory Bartle 5 Neale Patrick (replaced by Evan Olmstead) 6 James Chisholm 7 Tinus du Plessis (replaced by Alex Brown) 8 Mark Bright (c)

16 Tyrone Moran 17 Kurt Schonert 18 Jimmy Litchfield 19 Evan Olmstead 20 Alex Brown 21 George Horne 22 Lee Millar

Tries: Aaron Morris (37, 39 minutes) Peter Lydon (61 minutes)
Conversions: Peter Lydon (39, 61 minutes)
Penalty: Peter Lydon (53 minutes)

Referee: Christophe Ridley
Assistant Referees: Robert Warburton & Chris Sharp
Fourth Official: Matthew Daubney

Half-Time:  Rotherham Titans 7 – 12 London Scottish

Full-Time: Rotherham Titans 17 – 22 London Scottish

Attendance: 983



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