This weekend Pavs travelled to Nuneaton RFC for round five of The Midlands Premier Competition. On a relatively settled afternoon it was Nuneaton who kicked off. No-one could predict what would happen during the opening eleven minutes. First, Nuneaton ran in two tries in four minutes to take a 14-0 lead, even before most of the crowd had left the clubhouse. Not to be outdone, in the next six minutes Pavs ran in two tries of their own via Alex Barton and Phil Eggleshaw and with the Billam extras level the score at 14-14. Thankfully, the game then settled down into a rather more orderly affair with both sides having opportunities to go back on top. On twenty seven minutes, Pavs made inroads into the Nuns twenty two before fly half George Billam drifted through a gap in the defence to touch down and give Pavs the lead at 19-14. Nuneaton struck back with a jinking run and score from the scrum half to take themselves back in to the lead at 21-19. In the final play of the half Pavs put together the move of the game with backs and forwards interplaying before wing Alex Barton sprinted in for his second try. Accordingly, Pavs went into the break in the score at 24-21. A real topsy turvy half of rugby with neither side being able to seize and hold the advantage.
The second half kicked off with both sides tightening up their defences, but still striving to dominate the action. On fifty one minutes Nuneaton burst through the Pavs defence to go in front at 28-24. For the next twenty five minutes Pavs pinned Nuneaton back but without scoring. Finally, on seventy six minutes skipper Doug Billam finished another sweeping move to give Pavs back the lead at 29-28. Unfortunately, from the resultant kick off Pavs were deemed to have committed an offence whilst in possession in their own ruck. A seemingly harsh penalty was awarded which was duly kicked leaving Pavs precious little time to score. Final score Nuneaton 31 Pavs 29 with Pavs taking two bonus points.
All in all, a very frustrating day for the squad and the Pavs faithful. Arguably, this was one of the best performances so far and says so much about how far Pavs have come in a relatively short time. As always there are things that could be improved upon and the squad will reflect and work on these during the week. Finally, one must reflect that it was just one of those games where you have to take the final result on the chin, know you performed well, learn from it and move on.