The Highlanders had their first loss v Cinderford away this past weekend.
It was a tricky day with wet and windy conditions. The travelling squad was also very inexperienced and much younger than their opposition.
As it was a B&I Cup weekend the players in the wider performance squad were getting their chances to stake a claim for regular involvement with the first team.
It did not help that we had suffered a few more injuries than expected during the week. Nevertheless the young team was determined to make a game of it.
The teams inexperience however showed at the start of the game, playing with the wind, and from kick-off, immediately had an attacking lineout 5m out from the try line but the ball was missed and Cinderford were let off the hook far too easily.
The team did not capitalise enough in the first half with the wind in their favour to set the game up for a potential win.
Cinderford scored some points through the boot of their kicker and scored some well-taken tries, mainly from our own mistakes.
At one point in the match, Cinderford led 24-6.
However later in the second half the youngsters, against the wind, became more direct, showed a real urgency, which resulted in some decent continuity and momentum through strong carries by the forwards allowing the backs to find the space in the outside channels.
Through the best passage of the day, the Highlanders side scored what was definitely the best try of the match. This took the score at 24-11 and the Highlanders were back in the game with 15 minutes to go!
Unfortunately, some individual errors halted further momentum and opportunities for the young side.
Cinderford ended up scoring again to seal the home win, inflicting the first defeat of the season for the Highlanders.
The team will be looking to regain their winning form this weekend when they play back at the Richmond Athletic Ground, against top of the table side, Ampthill.
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