North Midlands RFU Cup final
Dudley Wasps 12 Ross on wye 41
Ross have completed the unthinkable and have delivered the treble in winning the league, Combination cup and last Sunday winning the North Midlands Vase. Ross ran in seven tries to retain the North Midlands Cup against Dudley Wasps and in doing so finished off the season with played 27 matches won 27 matches and have also been the most successful club in the North Mids vase completion since it was formed in 2006.
Playing at Dudley Kingswinford Heathbrook ground and with the sun on their backs, Ross looked sharp from the off moving the ball quickly from the breakdown and through the hands. Dudley struggled to prevent Ross getting over the gainline and within ten minutes Ross were two tries to the good. First flanker Chris Thomas scored wide out on the right after some great handling put him clear. Then a sublime score from tighthead prop Louis Morgan after some great offloading from fellow prop Johnnie Baynham and captain Casey Morgan put him through a gap in the Dudley defence to score. Full-back Thai Hayward added the two and Ross were 12-0 ahead.
Dudley however did not lie down, as being the home team and in front of a large crowd they looked to get back into the game through their big ball carriers. The Ross defence held firm and after weathering the storm Ross hit back with two further scores, first it was Gavin Oates who outpaced the home defence to score then Josh Element crashed over down the short side from a set-piece line out that has proved dividends for Ross on numerous occasions through the season. Thai added another conversion and with ten minutes to half time Ross were 24-0 ahead.
Dudley’s perseverance paid off as they scored just before the half time whistle so at the break Ross were 24-5 ahead. The second half mirrored the first as again Ross started strongly and within five minutes Gavin Oates made his physical presence felt again and added another score putting Ross 31-5 clear. Centre Matt King had taken over the kicking duties by this stage, adding the conversion. By now Dudley were looking to run everything as they looked for a way back into the contest and this led to errors and it was from two of these that Ross added another two scores. Firstly from a penalty, scrum half Marcus Barnard took a quick tap and sidestepped his way through the retreating defence to score, then after a Dudley knock on at halfway the ball fell to Peter Jarvis who chipped the ball to winger Craig Smith who outpaced the defence to score putting Ross 41-5 ahead. Dudley did add a late score but Ross were worthy winners 41-12 and retained the trophy they won last May.
Ross would like to thank, Coaches, players and their partners, supporters, sponsors and volunteers for all their help and support throughout the season.