Club app icon

Pitchero Club

The official Nuneaton RFC app


1st Team - Match centre

Newport (Salop)
L Thompson, E Brown, T Knight
B Cooper (3)
B Cooper (3)
Sat 29 Sep 15:00 - Midlands Division - Midlands Premier Full time

Nuns Topple Newport


The Nuns backed up their win over Luctonians win another strong performance.

The Nuns backed up their win over Luctonians win another strong performance.

2nd placed Newport visited Liberty Way on the weekend as the top points scorers in the league and with 4 wins from 4 games to play at home side that was in positive mood after a good performance and win the week before. Unlike last week though, the playing conditions were perfect with just a slight breeze down the pitch as a sizeable crowd was about to be given a feast of rugby.

The team showed 2 changes from last weekend with Adie Hall and Leigh Thompson swapping places from Number 8 and replacement and Theo Knight coming in at full back for his first game of the season. The Nuns kicked off at Newport set out their stall from the start with looking to run the ball at every opportunity.

The first opening exchanges were played between the 22m’s, but it was the Nuns that had the first real attacking chance of the game on 7 mins, when a penalty was kicked to touch and lineout set. Unfortunately, the action wasn’t complete, and the chance went but just a few minutes later and after a Newport ruck indiscretion another penalty was awarded. Ben Cooper split the up rights with the first of 6 from 6 kicks for a 15-point haul. 11 minutes gone and 3-0.

Newport came back into the game on 22 minutes when after a series of penalties over a period of time the hosts were pushed back from one 22m to the other without working back upfield. When Newport put a kick to the corner, the first catch and drive was repelled illegally and the second one saw the visitors cross for their first points and took the lead 3-7.

The Nuns weren’t deterred by this and got themselves back in the game. Some strong running from Knight, Thompson and Brown got the Nuns back into the 22m and when another ruck infringement was penalised Cooper struck a second penalty to bring the score to 6-7 on 27 minutes.

This was the start of purple patch for the hosts. Just 3 minutes after Coopers second penalty winger Nemani Rayabo made a break up the touch line. The ball was moved in field a couple of phases and then Cooper put in a kick across the pitch towards the corner. As the Nuns followed up the ‘Port winger tried to keep the ball in play but ending up throwing it straight to Todd Bullions who in turn fed Leigh Thompson to beat the last man and score his first try, Coopers conversion gave the Nuns a 13-7 lead that they wouldn’t give up for the rest of the game.

Just 2 minutes after this the Nuns were on the attack again and it was Rayabo who made another 40m charge up the touch line from a spilt ball. From a left-hand side ruck the ball was put through the hands to the opposite side where it found centre Elliott Brown who showed a winger’s instinct to beat two defenders from 35m out and score under the posts. The conversion took the score to 20-7 on 32 minutes.

The Nuns were guilty of over playing now though as they tried to play from too deep. They were caught holding on in a ruck and from the penalty ‘Port again kicked for the corner. After a failed surge and some phase play the ball was brought back for an advantage which was again sent to the corner. The maul was set and as it crossed the line the Referee awarded a try, but the hosts were convinced it wasn’t grounded. Unconverted it left the score 20-12 on 37 minutes.

There was time for the visitors to have a third shot at a catch and drive lineout in the last minute, but the lineout was turned over and a couple of phases later a penalty was awarded to the Nuns to signal the end of the half.

The second half didn’t start to plan for the hosts. After the ball was sent to the corner by Newport the hosts lineout was overthrown and was gratefully received by the Newport flanker who bundled over from 8m out for an unconverted try 20-17 on 42 minutes.

For the next 15 minutes the Nuns kept the visitors pegged back in their half with some tactical kicking and a solid defensive line.

The next score would be crucial, and it was the Nuns who made the breakthrough on 57 minutes. From a line out 45m out the ball was won and then carried up the middle of the pitch. Recycled, it was then moved wide and a well-timed Moses Liwaliwa offload was taken by Theo Knight who outpaced the covering defence from 40ms to cross for another converted try. 27-17.

Again, the Nuns kept some pressure on the visitors in attack and defence never really allowing them beyond the home 10m line. The Nuns did waste a couple of lineouts deep in the Newport half though. With the clock running down a breakdown penalty was awarded to the host in front of the posts 30m out which Cooper converted to take the lead to 13 points at 30-17 on 72 minutes.

Newport threw everything they had at it for the last 5 minutes and after some pressure in the home 22m a wide out penalty was taken quickly and fed the last man who crossed in the corner. The conversion was missed but ‘Port had secured a four try bonus point. 30-22 after 78minutes

The Nuns closed the last two minutes of the game out to see through another fine victory over a previously unbeaten side. This was another victory built on control with and without the ball as well as hard work and 18 players completing their jobs. The Nuns can take confidence but move forward knowing that they must approach every game with the same mind set.

Nuns: James Redman, Dale Bowyer, Sam Greening, Sam Wallis, Wills Messum, Todd Bullions, David Melville, Leigh Thompson; Huw Thomas, Ben Cooper, Nemani Rayabo, Moses Liwaliwa, Elliott Brown, Jackson Hughes, Theo Knight

Ben Holmes, Adie Hall, Tom Smitham

Tries: Thompson, Brown, Knight
Conversions: Cooper 3
Penalties: Cooper 3

Key moments

Penalty Ben Cooper kicks a penalty for Nuneaton
Penalty Ben Cooper kicks a penalty for Nuneaton
Try Leigh Thompson scores for Nuneaton
Conversion Ben Cooper kicks a conversion for Nuneaton
Try Elliott Brown scores for Nuneaton
Conversion Ben Cooper kicks a conversion for Nuneaton
Try Theo Knight scores for Nuneaton
Conversion Ben Cooper kicks a conversion for Nuneaton
Penalty Ben Cooper kicks a penalty for Nuneaton


View 0 new events
72:00 Penalty 30 - 0
Ben Cooper kicks a penalty for Nuneaton
62:00 Sub On
Tom Smitham is substituted on for Nuneaton
62:00 Sub Off
Huw Thomas is substituted off for Nuneaton
57:00 Try 25 - 0
Theo Knight scores for Nuneaton
57:00 Conversion 27 - 0
Ben Cooper kicks a conversion for Nuneaton
56:00 Sub On
Adie Hall is substituted on for Nuneaton
56:00 Sub Off
Sam Wallis is substituted off for Nuneaton
52:00 Sub Off
Sam Greening is substituted off for Nuneaton
41:00 Sub On
Ben Holmes is substituted on for Nuneaton
End of period 1
32:00 Try 18 - 0
Elliott Brown scores for Nuneaton
32:00 Conversion 20 - 0
Ben Cooper kicks a conversion for Nuneaton
30:00 Try 11 - 0
Leigh Thompson scores for Nuneaton
30:00 Conversion 13 - 0
Ben Cooper kicks a conversion for Nuneaton
27:00 Penalty 6 - 0
Ben Cooper kicks a penalty for Nuneaton
11:00 Penalty 3 - 0
Ben Cooper kicks a penalty for Nuneaton
Start of the game
Replay game

As it happened

  • Nuneaton
  • Newport (Salop)
  • 0
  • Ben Cooper Penalty 11:00'
  • Ben Cooper Penalty 27:00'
  • Leigh Thompson Try 30:00'
  • Ben Cooper Conversion 30:00'
  • Elliott Brown Try 32:00'
  • Ben Cooper Conversion 32:00'
  • Ben Holmes Sub On 41:00'
  • Sam Greening Sub Off 52:00'
  • Adie Hall Sub On 56:00'
  • Sam Wallis Sub Off 56:00'
  • Theo Knight Try 57:00'
  • Ben Cooper Conversion 57:00'
  • Tom Smitham Sub On 62:00'
  • Huw Thomas Sub Off 62:00'
  • Ben Cooper Penalty 72:00'

Team selection

Knight, Theo Knight, Theo
Hughes, Jackson Hughes, Jackson
Brown, Elliott Brown, Elliott
Liwaliwa, Moses Liwaliwa, Moses
Rayabo, Nemani Rayabo, Nemani
Cooper, Ben Cooper, Ben
Thomas, Huw Thomas, Huw
Thompson, Leigh Thompson, Leigh
Melville, David Melville, David
Bullions, Todd Bullions, Todd
Wallis, Sam Wallis, Sam
Messum, Wills Messum, Wills
Greening, Sam Greening, Sam
Bowyer, Dale Bowyer, Dale
Redman, James Redman, James

League round up

Other Midlands Premier results



Loading comments

League table

# Team Pl Pts
6. Sheffield 26 66
7. Burton 26 62
8. Nuneaton 26 61
9. Sandbach 26 61
10. Bournville 26 56
11. Doncaster Phoenix 26 54
12. Syston 26 46

Team sponsor


Club sponsors