National One: Moseley 12 Doncaster 19
Head coach Ian Smith insists Moseley are slowly but surely moving in the right direction.
Yet Smith will be disappointed his side didn’t take their opportunity to spike the guns of full-time rivals Doncaster Knights.
At 12-12, Moseley had their chances to grasp a prized victory – but didn’t take them.
They surprisingly shunned a long-range kick at goal, opting for position instead despite the fact full back Ollie Thomas was showing majestic form with the boot.
Then handling errors let Moseley down as they looked to penetrate an over-worked Doncaster defence.
But Moseley were always in contention thanks to the accurate Thomas, the full back firing Moseley into an early 3-0 lead, obliging from 35 yards.
Thomas increased the advantage with a second penalty, superbly struck from 43 metres after Doncaster were spotted pulling down at the line out.
Then Thomas tried a third ambitious shot from several metres inside his own half but this fell short in front of the posts and was probably the reason why he later spurned the attempt at 12-12.
Doncaster didn’t respond until late in the first half with a series of passing movements that stretched Moseley’s defence sufficiently for second row David Griffiths to bulldoze over close to the line and fly half Jamie Leonard kicked a fine conversion.
But Moseley snatched the lead with the last kick of the half, Thomas slotting over from in front of the posts after Doncaster were penalised in the ruck.
Moseley will wince at what proved to be a defining moment 22 minutes into the second half. They appeared to have covered a break along the left flank when winger Donovan Van Vuuran picked up possession and ran the best part of 40 metres unopposed to score in the corner.
Lennard missed a fairly straight-forward conversion and Moseley immediately levelled at 12-12 when Thomas landed another 40-yard shot after Doncaster failed to release in the maul.
The Knights then launched a grandstand finish, forcing a series of scrums close to Moseley’s line, the last of which enabled scrum half Jamie Albinson to spot a gap in the defence and scamper over unchallenged. Lennard landed a simple conversion.
MOSELEY: Thomas; Sharples, Trinder (Binns), Reay, Bressington; Vasey, Taylor (Ireland); Williams, Caves, Sigley, Arnold, Mulldowney, Evans (Mason), Bignall, Rodwell. Replacements: Davis, Oselton, Stott, Whitney
DONCASTER: Carter; Davies, Armitage, Tonga’uiha, Van Vuuran; Lennard, Albinson; List, Jenkins, Cusack, Griffiths, Kenworthy, Afu, Grainger (Cochrane), Planchant. Replacements: Davies, Smith, Tau, Goss, Warnock, Hughes.
Referee: JP Doyle.