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Titans edge out Scottish at Clifton Lane

Titans edge out Scottish at Clifton Lane

London Scottish's play-off hopes suffered a major blow this afternoon as they slipped to a 15-12 defeat against Rotherham Titans at Clifton Lane.

London Scottish’s play-off hopes suffered a major blow this afternoon as they slipped to a 15-12 defeat against Rotherham Titans at Clifton Lane.

In a classic game of two halves, largely dictated by a strong wind, Scottish enjoyed the upper hand in the first 40 minutes deservedly going in at the break 12-3 ahead.


But the tide turned significantly after the interval as Scottish had two players sent to the sin-bin and the league's top points scorer Juan Pablo Socino kicked Titans to victory.

Scottish could not get out their half in the second period and conceded far too many penalties whilst their set piece began to unravel having initially been a strength in the game.

The result is not a terminal blow to Scottish's play-off hopes.

They picked up a deserved losing bonus point but victory you feel is now a must when they return to action in a fortnight's time at Leeds Carnegie.

Dan Newton gave Scottish an early lead landing a penalty on seven minutes before Titans centre Socino replied in kind with a penalty straight from the restart.

USA Eagles prop Eric Fry limped off with a leg injury on 14 minutes but immediately London Scottish were awarded a penalty from a scrum that allowed Newton to restore his side's advantage.

In contrast to their efforts against Nottingham last month, Scottish were managing the conditions well, keeping it tight with fly half Newton controlling play and nine Robbie Shaw marshaling his forward pack well.

Titans gave away five penalties in the opening 25 minutes and the fifth was easily dispatched over the posts by Newton to move the Exiles further ahead, 9-3.

The Athletic outfit lay claim to the best defence in the league and their qualities on the backfoot showed a number of times in the opening half as they forced errors from their opponents in dangerous positions.

Rotherham continued to concede penalties and Newton was punishing them, the Welshman edging Scottish 12-3 ahead with another penalty on the stroke of half-time.

Socino kicked a simple penalty early in the second half for 12-6 as the hosts upped the tempo and utilised the wind advantage to take control of territory.

Errors began creeping into Scottish's game and when Titans won a scrum against the head they soon earned a penalty which Socino kicked to make it a three point game.

It was all square moments later after Socino's successful fourth kick of the game from a penalty which resulted in a yellow card for centre Andy Reay.

Titans then took the lead for the first time thanks to another penalty from Argentine Socino on 70 minutes as open side flanker Matt Everard was yellow carded for persistent infringement at the breakdown meaning Scottish were temporarily down to 13 men.

Thereafter the visitors continually struggled to gain any kind of foothold in the game and Titans easily saw out the remaining minutes for a priceless victory.

Listen to Mike Friday's post match interview here.

Listen to skipper Mark Bright's post match interview here.

Listen to Head of S&C Tim Harper's interview as he discusses the season so far and his plans for pre-season this coming summer. Click here.

Our next home game is on Sunday, March 9, 12.30pm kick-off, when we welcome local rivals Ealing Trailfinders to the Athletic Ground.

Fans can watch this game for just £10 (Clan, standing ticket) and all London Scottish club members can bring friend for a fiver.

For full details on our ticket offers, click here.

As always, under-16s can get in for free.

Rotherham Titans:

15, Sean Scanlon; 14 Jamie Broadley; 13, Jack Roberts; 12, Juan Pablo Socino; 11, Curtis Wilson; 10, Dallan Murphy; 9, Charlie Mulchrone (c); 1, Robin Hislop; 2, Ben Sowrey; 3, Colin Quigley; 4, Josh Thomas-Brown; 5, Dan Sanderson; 6, Alex Rieder; 7, Jack Preece; 8, Alfie To’oala.

Used replacements: 21, Dan White; 17, Marshall Gadd; 16, Tom Cruse; 18, Mark Tampin; 20, Ali Birch.

Unused replacements: 19, Barney Maddison; 22, Michael Keating.

Penalties: Socino (5)

London Scottish:

15, Jim Thompson; 14, Pete Homan; 13, Mike Doneghan; 12, Andy Reay; 11, Miles Mantella; 10, Dan Newton; 9, Robbie Shaw; 1, Eric Fry; 2, Adam Kwasnicki; 3, Tomas Francis; 4, Paul Spivey; 5, David Lyons; 6, Neil Best; 7, Matt Everard; 8, Mark Bright (c).

Used replacements: 16, Tom Dunn; 17, Mark Irish; 18, Sam Tworney; 22, PJ Gidlow; 21, James Love.

Unused replacements: 19, Tommy Spinks; 20, Lee Millar.

Penalties: Newton (4).

Sin-binned: Andy Reay, Matt Everard.

Referee: Greg MacDonald.

Assistant referees: Chris Sharp and William Halford.

Attendance: 1342. 

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