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Spartans 1st - Match centre

Spartans (Midlands)
M Southam, T Hardy
Unknown, Unknown
T Hardy (2), Unknown
Unknown, Unknown
T Hardy (2)
Penalty Try
Sat 11 Nov 14:15 - Midlands Division - Midlands 2 West (North) Full time

Spartans 27, Walsall 14.


In a fixture that would have been unimaginable until recent times, Spartans defied history, tradition and experience in a first ever first team contest between the two sides.

Preceded by a respectful minute's silence for The Fallen, the game began with both sides sizing each other up and a tense encounter began to develop. Walsall clearly had an older, wiser and more streetwise set of forwards in front of some strong centres and lively wingers, but Spartans were well organised in defence and able to tackle a direct approach from the visitors. The scoreboard operator had a nice rest for the first twenty minutes as play stayed in the middle of the field, but Spartans broke the deadlock when a suspiciously forward looking pass ended in the hands of Matthew Southam who raced home to score. Walsall fought back and used their experience well to secure both possession and territory, and eventually used their pack to drive over and level the scores. The game ebbed and flowed as a rare still day at Coppice Lane allowed opportunities to run rather than kick, but Spartans gratefully accepted a penalty from some Walsall indiscipline and Tom Hardy split the sticks for a half time lead of three points.

The game of chess began again in the second half as Walsall sought to power through and over their hosts, whilst Spartans looked to counter attack when possible. As the tension mounted chances for either side were few and far between, but the visitors conceded both a converted try then an outrageous drop goal from Tom Hardy to increase the gap. Both sides turned to the bench as the intensity crept up, and some positional shuffling saw Walsall change their game. Strong running and good support saw a fine try scored, and it was back to a one score game for the final quarter. The Men In Black were sensing an upset and managed to keep the visitors in their own 22 with some remarkably sensible rugby, and a massive effort at scrumtime saw the referee race under the posts for a penalty try. Walsall showed their class by hitting back, but time waits for no-one and much to the relief of many tired Spartans it was game over.

This week Spartans travel to Warwickshire friends Southam for a cup tie. (2.15pm).

Win a Maximuscle training session with Anthony Watson

Key moments

Try Matt Southam scores for Spartans (Midlands)
Conversion Thomas Hardy kicks a conversion for Spartans (Midlands)
Try Try for Walsall
Conversion Conversion for Walsall
Penalty Thomas Hardy kicks a penalty for Spartans (Midlands)
Penalty Thomas Hardy kicks a penalty for Spartans (Midlands)
Try Thomas Hardy scores for Spartans (Midlands)
Conversion Thomas Hardy kicks a conversion for Spartans (Midlands)
Try Try for Walsall
Conversion Conversion for Walsall
Conversion Conversion for Spartans (Midlands)


View 0 new events
75:00 Conversion 27 - 14
Conversion for Spartans (Midlands)
75:00 Penalty Try
Penalty try awarded to Spartans (Midlands)
65:00 Conversion 20 - 14
Conversion for Walsall
65:00 Try 20 - 12
Try for Walsall
60:00 Sub On
Ryan Devine is substituted on for Spartans (Midlands)
55:00 Try 18 - 7
Thomas Hardy scores for Spartans (Midlands)
55:00 Conversion 20 - 7
Thomas Hardy kicks a conversion for Spartans (Midlands)
50:00 Sub On
Will Sanders is substituted on for Spartans (Midlands)
45:00 Penalty 13 - 7
Thomas Hardy kicks a penalty for Spartans (Midlands)
End of period 1
35:00 Sub On
Josh Turton is substituted on for Spartans (Midlands)
30:00 Penalty 10 - 7
Thomas Hardy kicks a penalty for Spartans (Midlands)
25:00 Try 7 - 5
Try for Walsall
25:00 Conversion 7 - 7
Conversion for Walsall
10:00 Try 5 - 0
Matt Southam scores for Spartans (Midlands)
10:00 Conversion 7 - 0
Thomas Hardy kicks a conversion for Spartans (Midlands)
Start of the game
Replay game

As it happened

  • Spartans (Midlands)
  • Walsall
  • 0
  • Matt Southam Try 10:00'
  • Thomas Hardy Conversion 10:00'
  • Try 25:00'
  • Conversion 25:00'
  • Thomas Hardy Penalty 30:00'
  • Josh Turton Sub On 35:00'
  • Thomas Hardy Penalty 45:00'
  • Will Sanders Sub On 50:00'
  • Thomas Hardy Try 55:00'
  • Thomas Hardy Conversion 55:00'
  • Ryan Devine Sub On 60:00'
  • Try 65:00'
  • Conversion 65:00'
  • Penalty Try 75:00'
  • Conversion 75:00'

Team selection

Garbett, Alex Garbett, Alex
Holland, Cameron Holland, Cameron
Southam, Matt Southam, Matt
Sharpe, Jack Sharpe, Jack
Garbett, Brett Garbett, Brett
Hardy, Thomas Hardy, Thomas
Friend, Sam Friend, Sam
Foulds, Mike Foulds, Mike
Bennett, Alex Bennett, Alex
Bates-Powell, Perry Bates-Powell, Perry
Bennett, Andrew Bennett, Andrew
Owen, Jamie Owen, Jamie
Wright, Will Wright, Will
Bingham, Jack Bingham, Jack
O'Donovan, Chris O'Donovan, Chris

League round up

Other Midlands 2 West (North) results



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League table

# Team Pl Pts
1. Whitchurch 21 98
2. Crewe & Nantwich 22 80
3. Leek 21 69
4. Spartans (Midlands) 22 66
5. Ludlow 22 62
6. Veseyans 22 57
7. Walsall 22 53

Team sponsors


Club sponsors