Fylde RFC 27 Rotherham Titans 32: Visitors leave with narrow victory
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Although a late try gave Fylde hope, they ultimately came up short and finished with just one losing bonus point.
It was the visitors who got the first points of the day, Lloyd Hayes slotting over a penalty in the sixth minute.
Fylde responded two minutes later, Corey Bowker picking a defence-splitting run near the ruck to go through from 30 metres out and score with Greg Smith adding the extras.
Rotherham bounced back quickly, two brilliant offloads eventually finding Charlie Capps who raced under the posts before Hayes’ conversion put them 10-7 in front.
Having squandered two opportunities, Fylde were in a very promising position in the 26th minute when Sam Stott raced away but Harry Newborn deliberately knocked on to stop the hosts from continuing their attack.
He received a yellow card and Fylde looked to have made the most of this man advantage when Toby Harrison burrowed towards the line, but was stopped inches short.
Fylde’s attack continued until they tried an inside offload which didn’t go to hand, seeing Rotherham’s John Okafor pick up the loose ball and run 70 metres for another try converted by Hayes.
Rather than feel sorry for themselves, Fylde got straight back on the offensive and were finally rewarded for their play in the 35th minute.
Tom Burrow broke before feeding Jordan Dorrington, who raced inside and found Scott Rawlings for his second try in as many games.
Smith’s conversion put Fylde three points behind at 17-14 with half-time five minutes away before he landed two penalties in as many minutes to put them ahead at the break.
The second of those penalties saw a sinbinning for Rotherham’s Jack Townsend, who was cautioned for a high tackle.
However, Rotherham came out with renewed energy in the second period and levelled the scores with Hayes’ penalty in the 47th minute.
It got better for them when half-time substitute JB Bruzulier went in at the corner after finding space on the short side of the ruck.
Hayes landed the conversion from out wide before the Titans, who were on a five-game winning streak, extended their lead as Luke Cole went over from a driving maul.
Freddie Reader came on for his home debut and was part of Fylde’s resurgence in the last quarter, which saw them have a lot more of the ball.
It took them until the 76th minute to finally cross the whitewash, Valu-Tane Bentley powering over from short range to set up a nailbiting last couple of minutes.
Smith added the conversion but it was Rotherham who walked away from the Woodlands with a bonus-point win.
Fylde RFC: Dorrington, Lanigan (Reader 57), Stott, Rawlings (Forster 41), Turner, Smith, Wootton, Bowker (Brooks 77), Gregory, Altham, Parkinson, Burrow, Ashcroft, Bentley (Parker 66), Harrison (Bentley 76). Non-playing replacement: Raymont.
Rotherham Titans: Townsend, Tanumi, Hayes, Dunne, Taylor (Bruzulier 40), Milner, Metcalfe, Capps, Bergmanas (Cole 62), Ward (Kivalu 27), Okafor, Smith, Payne (Kay 64), Newborn, Poole (Bustin 27).