A delayed kick off added to the tension of a crucial clash in BUCS Rugby Union Prem North A league between Birmingham and the University of Nottingham. Both sides approached the fixture looking for a much-needed in this Midlands Derby.
The first 10 minutes were dominated by the hosts and had it not been for ill-discipline in attack, Birmingham would have perhaps come away with more points. They did manage to open the scoring as their attack stretched the Nottingham defence from touchline to touchline giving winger Eddie Jenkinson enough room to dive over in the corner to make it 5-0. The next thirty minutes proved to be a dogged affair with the game being very stop-start. Nottingham rarely entered the Birmingham half but did manage to come away with a crucial three points before half time with a penalty in front of the posts.
The second half started with the same trend as the first as neither side was able to gain any momentum in the match. The game then livened up as gaps began to appear around the park as fatigue began to set in for both sides. It was Birmingham who capitalised as a period of sustained pressure led to fresher Ed Adamson going over on the short side due to the overlap, giving the hosts a 10 point lead. With just over five minutes to play Nottingham looked for the match-leveling score and unfortunately for the home crowd they got it, largely due to a slice of luck. A charge down block by their fly half landed perfectly back into his hands, and he passed the ball with ease to his supporting player who dived under the posts to bring the score to 10-10. Despite efforts from both sides in the last few minutes to win the game, including a valiant last second penalty attempt from Tighe Maxwell-Whiteley, nothing could separate the teams and the spoils were shared.
Try scorer and man of the match Eddie Jenkinson described the match as:
“A tough one to take considering I thought we deserved to win the game”