<strong>Grove go down to Milton Keynes in the mud</strong>
<strong>Milton Keynes (20) vs. Grove (10)</strong>
Grove lost out to MK on a pitch that should have been declared unplayable on Saturday. Before the match started the pitch had a considerable amount of standing water on it and it was clear that if the match was to be played it would be on a quagmire and so it proved.
Although Grove started very strongly, playing adventurous rugby given the conditions and went ahead after 14 minutes through a Roger Sevier penalty it was MK who had a two try first half lead of 12 : 3. During the first half Grove skipper and fly half Nick Sevier was denied a try between the posts when the referee adjudged the ball to have been held up and from a separate incident wing Gareth Hudson was yellow carded.
In the second half Grove again tried to play open rugby but the conditions were really not conducive to this and MK went further ahead 17 : 3. Again the referee denied Grove two tries, again adjudging the ball to have been held up on both occasions but centre Jamie Burns was finally able to break through to score a try which Roger Sevier converted to bring Grove back into the game at 10 : 17. Lock Stewart Sherwood, wing Harry Carr and the injured Nick Sevier were replaced by Mark Tugwell, Tom Harrington and Jonny Simmonds respectively. With time running out but with still a chance to draw the game Grove gave away a penalty in front of their own posts, compounded by further backchat, to give MK another 10 metre advantage and with a now easy penalty to convert they closed out the game as just about deserved winners at 20 : 10.
Essentially MK had played the atrocious conditions better than Grove but really this was a match that should not have been played on this pitch at all.