Brackley leave it late to snatch win against bottom side Thorney

A late try by Matt Lowe finally broke the resistance of bottom-of-the-table Thorney to earn Blackley a narrow 7-3 victory in the Midlands 4 East (South) division of the National League.
Try-scorer Matt Lowe bulldozes his way through for Brackley. EMN-200114-133523002Try-scorer Matt Lowe bulldozes his way through for Brackley. EMN-200114-133523002
Try-scorer Matt Lowe bulldozes his way through for Brackley. EMN-200114-133523002

Thorney had won only one of their ten fixtures, but are notoriously tough at home and were wounded by a heavy defeat the previous week.

So, when they led 3-0 at half-time, it looked as if Brackley might be on the receiving end of an upset, especially as they struggled to rectify matters in the second half, even though they had a strong wind behind them.

However, as the clock ticked towards the 75th minute, the visitors were finally rewarded for their pressure when second row Lowe powered over in the corner for a matchwinning try that was converted by Dan Gray.

Despite some desperate, late efforts by the hosts, Brackley held on to their deserved win, which kept them sixth in the 11-team table, albeit 21 points being leaders Birstall.

The wind, blowing straight up the pitch, played a big part in the match and, in the first half, Thorney used it to their advantage, pinning Brackley back in their own 22 for most of the time.

The visitors showed impressive defence, frustrating Thorney. They also looked to run the ball from everywhere, although costly turnovers prevented them from scoring and allowed the home team to clear their lines.

Thorney opened the scoring with an easy penalty five minutes before the interval, after which it was Brackley’s turn to control the territory.

They piled in to the home defence, only for mistakes to lead to several try-scoring opportunities being missed until Lowe flew to the rescue.

This Saturday, Brackley travel to face another struggling side, Kempston, in what is a rescheduled game from before Christmas when it was postponed because the hosts’ pitch was waterlogged.

They are hot favourites to chalk up another victory because Kempston have lost nine of their ten league matches so far this season. However, the home side have shown signs of improvement recently, so the contest is also a potential banana skin.

Brackley’s next home game is on Saturday, January 25 against Wellingborough O.G.

Meanwhile, at Nightingales Close, Brackley’s development team fell to a 15-0 defeat against Stockwood Park 2nd in their first run-out of 2020.

In a well-contested game, they put in a strong performance, but just found the visitors too difficult to cope with.