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Unbeaten run: Victory for Knutsford
Mossley HilL RFC 19
Knutsford RFC 1st XV 20
Knutsfords determination was immediately compounded by an awful restart from Walker. From the resultant scrum a series of penalties were conceded but Knutsford rallied and made some good progress. Flanker Tom Coulbeck was then forced to leave the field on 10 minutes with a calf injury to be replaced by Giles Robertson.
Mossleys forwards were doing the damage and the Knutsford pack seemed disinterested, missing tackles and allowing the game line to be breached on every play. Knutsford went further behind as Mossley scored for a second time, following a long period of posession Maxwell tried to blitz his opposite number, but it backfired as the dog-leg was exploited Again the conversion followed.
Mossley were in the ascendency as they continued to play some flowing rugby. But it was Knutsfords mistake from full-back Williams as a clearance kick was sliced. With most of the team stranded offside, the Mossley right winger took full advantage, collecting the ball on half way and outpacing Murphy an Williams to score in the corner. The conversion was missed.
Coulbeck delivered a stern half time team talk, and it had an immediate effect as Knutsford were transformed for the next half an hour. Captain Sam Fishburne started to carry the ball well providing the target up front, Mooney and Walker put some tempo into the play and pressure began to build. But it was Chris Edmonds, playing at Open Side instead of Centre who was linking the play and his graft was rewarded with a score after good work fromthe Richards, Walker and Lockett. Mooney, assured as ever, slotted the Conversion.
Paul Williams has hit some fine form in recent weeks and seemingly desperate to rectify his first half performance, he started to pop up in good positions. This paid off as he burst down the blind side on half way and chipped ahead. The Mossley full back missed his fly hack allowing Williams to kick ahead and outpace the cover for a fine score in the corner.
More Knutsford pressure down the left saw first Chris Vincent and then Richard Lockett have legitimate tries disallowed.Mossley went down to 14 men as their Hooker was sin binned for killing the ball. Knutsford got their reward as Walker burrowed over following more good work from Fishburne, but the missed conversion left a two point deficit. Knutsford replacement Sam Kemp had slotted straight in and looked excellent, but he too was sin binned for playing the ball on the floor. Mossley then lost a second Forward to the bin for a repeat offence, and Mooney calmly slotted the resultant Penalty to take the lead.
The final ten minutes saw Mossley rally. The Liverpool side lie second bottom but their first half performance meant that they probably deserved more from the game. Knutsford looked nervous, missed more tackles and returned to playing as individuals. But they held on to nick the win. They will be looking for a much improved performance next week, especially as they host leaders Oldershaw who are unbeaten this season.