Ill-discipline cost Nottingham Trent men’s rugby team dear as they conceded two sin bins on the way to a 22-3 defeat to an experienced University of Nottingham side at Meadow Lane.
Trent pushed their much-fancied rivals all the way but eventually succumbed to the class of their Beeston-based opponents.
After surviving an early penalty Trent were soon pushed back deep in their half and Uni took a 3-0 lead from a penalty in the twelfth minute.
This lead was short-lived however and fly half Will Maisey had soon expertly converted from Trent’s first penalty to even the score.
But from then on Uni began to dominate the play and force several line-outs in the right corner of the pitch which were defended well by Trent.
This pressure soon paid off and Uni took the lead when another line-out on the right flank resulted in a mall – this was forced over the line for the first try of the game which was duly converted.
Things got even harder for Trent when second-row Tom Holliday was sin binned for repeatedly bringing down the maul five minutes before the break.
Trent stayed strong till the half-way point however and the score remained 10-3 to UoN at half-time.
NTU came out fighting in the second half and were given a further boost with the re-introduction of Holliday.
And their improvements were nearly rewarded when Maisey’s long-range penalty dropped inches wide of the UoN posts.
But the friction in the game continued and Trent suffered another set-back when outside centre Andreas Robertson became their second player to be sent to the sin bin.
This didn’t deter Trent however who nearly got themselves back in contention when a side-step from Maisey nearly opened up a chance to score in the right corner.
UoN defended the resulting scrum well though and secured their win when the Beeston fly half pulled off a fantastic reverse pass, allowing their inside centre to storm through to make the score 3-15.
Tired legs were beginning to take their toll on Trent and the score was completed when a powerful UoN scrum was pushed to the Trent try-line resulting in a penalty try which was then converted.
Considering this was a relatively inexperienced side containing many first-years Trent can take many positives from a strong battling performance.