Kenilworth allow hosts Hereford to pull away in the final 15 minutes

Joe Jepps brought Kenilworth back into the game with a second-half try.
Joe Jepps brought Kenilworth back into the game with a second-half try.

Hereford bolstered their play-off aspirations with a bonus-point victory but it was only in the final 15 minutes that the game got away from the visitors, writes Greg Hickman.

Hereford attempted to run everything, even from inside their own 22, and it was ironic that their first try came straight through the centres with not a hand laid upon the home tryscorer.

The successful conversion made it 7-0 to Hereford in the 17th minute.

Ks were already down to 14 following a yellow card for hooker Harry Abell after interference at a quick tapped penalty before a deliberate knock-on from the Hereford eight saw the referee even up the numbers.

A good break by Bobby Thompson supported by flanker Will Blundell made yards and Josh Hickman then kicked to the corner for an attacking lineout. A subsequent penalty from Hickman saw Kenilworth’s efforts rewarded to reduce the deficit to four points with 35 minutes played.

Kenilworth lost their influential number seven Ollie Burman to a blood injury following one of his typical, fully committed tackles and Hereford took advantage of the visitors’ reorganisation, going through of a huge gap to score under the posts.

Poor tackling again let Kenilworth down soon after the restart as Hereford scored their third ‘soft’ try to make it 21-3.

Kenilworth responded well with Joe Jepps and Rhys Jones taking play into the home 22.

The ball was recycled to Hickman who sent in a clever crossfield kick for the unmarked Jepps who took the ball on the bounce to score Kenilworth’s first try.

Hickman’s conversion brought it back to 21-10.

The next 15 minutes saw both sides trying to exert the upper hand, with handling errors and penalties frustrating Ks’ attempts to close the gap.

A Hereford counter in the 64th minute proved the clincher, with the bonus-point try causing Kenilworth to lose some of their intensity, allowing Hereford to run in three further tries.