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Nottingham topple Titans to go second


WINS at Clifton Lane have been few and far between for Nottingham, which made their 32-12 victory there all the more welcome.

Jack Cobden try Rotherham

SWEETEST THING: Jack Cobden marked his return to the side with his first try of the season. PIC: ALISON BOWDEN

As if that in itself were not sufficient cause to celebrate, the five-pointer lifted them into second place in the Championship table following Bedford's surprise defeat at London Scottish.

For much of the afternoon there was little to choose between the sides. Nottingham, having stormed into an early lead, were forced to defend for long spells, but they did so extremely effectively to limit the home side to penalty chances.

The game turned in their favour though when Titans had Charlie Mulchrone sin-binned seven minutes from time.

Making the most of numerical advantage has not always been a Nottingham strong point, but they stunned Titans with three a try blitz in those last minutes to record a bonus point win that had not looked likely for most of this game.

They went ahead almost from the kick off as Jack Cobden raced through. Although James Arlidge missed the conversion, he soon put over a penalty to make it 0-8.

Two penalties from the home side brought them back to 6-8 at the break.

As Titans became increasingly dominant over the second half another brace of penalties put them into a 12-8 lead.

But for all their possession they could not break down the Nottingham defence, and they were certainly made to pay for that in clinical fashion in those dramatic last few minutes.

A kickable penalty was put to the corner and from the resulting lineout the home side were penalised a couple of times for pulling down the Nottingham maul. Finally the referee ran out of patience and sent Mulchrone to the sin-bin.

At the next attempt the pack drove over with Arlidge making it 12-15 with the conversion.

A minute later replacement Andy Forsyth broke clear and Arlidge converted to make it 12-22.

A fine solo effort from Alex Lewington in the final minute secured the bonus point, with Arlidge completing the scoring with the conversion and an injury time penalty.

Martin Haag's men now turn their attentions to the British and Irish Cup, needing to beat Doncaster away this weekend and Welsh Principality Premiership side Llandovery to secure a place in the second round.

Rotherham 12  (Law 4 Pens) Nottingham Rugby 32 (Jack Cobden, Wilson, Forsyth, Lewington Tries; Arlidge 3 Conv; Arlidge 2 Pens)

Nottingham:Lewington, Jack Cobden, Streather (sub: Forsyth 58), Munro, Crane, Arlidge, Romans, Harris, Malton (sub: Wright 76), Holford (sub: Bower 61), Montagu, Rouse (sub: Price 76), Cooper (sub: Shaw 62), Wilson, Calladine.

Ref:G McDonald.Att:1, 498


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