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Scottish seal victory thanks to Mantella magic

Scottish seal victory thanks to Mantella magic

A Miles Mantella finishing master class proved the difference between the sides this afternoon as London Scottish beat Nottingham Rugby 27-6 at the Athletic Ground to make it two wins from three in the Greene King IPA Championship.

A Miles Mantella finishing master class proved the difference between the sides this afternoon as London Scottish beat Nottingham Rugby 27-6 at the Athletic Ground to make it two wins from three in the Greene King IPA Championship.

The flying winger scored three second half tries to seal victory for the hosts in their first home league game of the season.


It was far from one way traffic however and aside from the three tries scored by Scottish it was a fairly attritional affair played in blustery conditions.

The opening exchanges were frustrating for fans with problems at scrum time in the first ten minutes.

The game came to life five minutes later however when Lee Millar looked to be in for a try before the referee pulled play back to award a penalty to Scottish.

MiIlar himself pushed his kick just wide from 22 metres out. 

Nottingham themselves were awarded a penalty two minutes later which fly half Matthew Jarvis slotted home from straight in front.

The hosts hit back immediately after Nottingham were penalised at a line-out, Millar making no mistake with his second penalty attempt.

Nottingham were useful on the counter-attack at times but an Alex Karonias turnover and Miles Mantela's vital interception thwarted their advances at crucial moments.

Right on half time the hosts suffered a blow when Neil Best was sin-binned for a late tackle but the teams went in all square at the break after a fairly circumspect first 40.

An early penalty in the second half pushed Nottingham back in front as Jarvis slotted home an easy penalty.

The host responded with a sustained period of pressure opting for attacking line-outs instead of kicks at goal in the swirling wind.

They couldn't penetrate the Nottingham rearguard initially but soon took control on the hour mark.

Nottingham flanker Tom Calladine was sin-binned for persistent infringement and from another attacking line-out Scottish took the lead.

Replacement scrum half Jamie Stevenson sniped to the short side, feeding Mantella for his opener in the left corner.

Millar nailed the difficult conversion to open up a 10-6 advantage but the home side were soon dealt a blow when Best was red carded for receiving his second caution of the game.

His teammates responded in the best possible fashion scoring a early try of the season contender.

Quick ball won at the tail of the line-out near half way allowed Stevenson to ship the ball quickly out to Millar.

The former Gala man fed Oli Grove and with PJ Gidow providing the decoy, Millar looped round eventually feeding James Love.

The full-back drew his man passing to Mantella who powered past a couple of defenders to finish off a stunning move.

Millar made no mistake with the extras again and despite Nottingham putting pressure on Scottish inside the 22, they couldn't find a way through.

A Millar penalty in injury time pushed the score to 20-6 and Scottish rounded things off straight from kick-off with Mantella getting on the end of Grove's grubber kick to touch down for a hat-trick.

Stand off Millar's dead-eye conversion made it 27-6 to complete a great afternoon for the Athletic Ground lads.

London Scottish

15. James Love, 14. Mike Doneghan, 13. Oli Grove, 12. Andy Reay, 11. Miles Mantella, 10. Lee Millar, 9. Jordi Pasqualin.

1. Nick Mayhew, 2. Ted Stagg, 3. Lewis Thiede, 4.Alex Karonias, 5. David Lyons, 6. Chevvy Pennycook, 7. Neil Best, 8. Mark Bright (c).

Sin-bin: Neil Best.

Sent off: Neil Best.

Used replacements: 20. Jamie Stevenson, 19. Tyler Hotson, 17. Mark Irish, 18. Eric Fry, 22. PJ Gidlow. 

Unused replacements: 16.Harry Allen,  21. Dan Newton.

Nottingham Rugby

15. Ed Styles, 14. Henry Purdy, 13. George Catchpole, 12. Joe Munro, 11. Ryan Hough, 10. Matthew Jarvis, 9. Harrison Lee-Everton.

1. Campese Ma'afu, 2. Jon Vickers, 3. Harry Williams, 4. Tom Price, 5. Dan Montagu, 6. Tom Calladine, 7. Brent Wilson (c), 8. Alex Shaw.

Sin bin: Tom Calladine.

Used replacements: 21, Sean Romans, 17. Michael Holford,19. Neilus Keogh, 16. Ryan Bower, 18, Scott Wright,  20. Rory Lynn, 22, Joe Burton.

Referee: Simon Harding.

Attendance: 1,400.

Reaction: James Buckland.

“The score line flattered us slightly and we struggled to get the ball especially in the first half.

“But Nottingham are a good side, a top four Championship club, and to get any kind of win against them is pleasing.

“Miles (Mantella) is actually one of our main men defensively but he is our X Factor as well when he gets his hands on the ball. I thought Mike Doneghan also had a good game, especially in defence.

“We can do better and for the second week in a row our set piece can improve. We take the four points and we move on.”

Listen to the full audio interview here.

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