Dalziel Rugby Club
DALZIEL were pipped to their first win in three attempts as Greenock posted only their Premier Three victory of 2012 on Saturday.
In an enthralling encounter that swung from end to end the hosts fought back twice to nearly level at the death.
Dalziel started well but Wanderers soaked up the early pressure and, from a breakaway engineered by Callum Reid, took play deep into the hosts’ half.
A good passing move led to winger Sean Connolly darting through and when he was halted close to the line, his pass found Reid who touched
down in the corner. Despite the angle, Kenny Diffenthal converted for 7-0 with barely 10 minutes on the clock.
In 25 minutes Wanderers attacked again and a searching break by Brendan McGroarty took play close to the line.
Stout defence by Dalziel forced the ball into touch, with Wanderers awarded the lineout.
Yan Young’s throw was taken by captain Matt Gray and he set up a driving maul, which forced Dalziel over their own try-line.
Before Wanderers could ground the ball, Dalziel illegally collapsed the maul, resulting in a penalty try which Diffenthal converted for 14-0.
On the half-hour mark the hosts got on the scoreboard when a fine bullocking run down the wing by Craig Simmonds sucked in several Wanderers defenders and when he was stopped just short, his inside pass found Kris Hughes, who touched down between the posts, with John Harris converting for 14-7.
With the interval looming Dalziel threw everything they had at Greenock and from a ruck offence Harris slotted a penalty for 14-10.
The second half followed a similar pattern with Dalziel attacking and Wanderers defending strongly.
On 52 minutes a further Harris penalty reduced the deficit to a single point, with Greenock’s lead looking particularly fragile.
However the visitors rallied and on the hour a superbly disguised Diffenthal pass gave prop Dougie Smith a chance to break the gain line and take play deep into Dalziel territory.
Quickly recycled ball found Gray and he barged through two defenders to cross, with Diffenthal converting for 21-13.
Dalziel struck back within four minutes, when a kick ahead was missed by the Greenock defence and George Sloan followed up to rumble over the line from close range, with Harris converting for 21-20.