Lymm 24 ... Wirral 27

THIS was a lack-lustre performance by Wirral but they managed to galvanise themselves to take a winning lead in the final minutes of the game.

Lymm started in a very positive manner and within thre minutes centre Oli Higginson cut through the Wirral back line to score under the posts from 35m out to established an early seven point lead.

This was increased to 10 points when Tom Shard landed a penalty from 30m.

Lymm were growing in confidence, assisted when Wirral winger, Mark Williams was sin-binned for tackling a player in the air from his own kick through.

Playing against 14 men, Lymm applied pressure to the Wirral scrum and were rewarded with a penalty try leaving Wirral shell-shocked with a 17-0 deficit after 20 minutes.

Wirral steadily worked their way into the game and managed to get on the scoreboard with a penalty from James Annetts.

In the minutes before half time, and with a greater share of possession, Wirral were able to put pressure on Lymm. Wirral lost hooker, Stuart Gratton (serious shoulder injury) but scored when an astute grubber kick beat the home defence. 

Matt Loon won the foot-race to touch down; James Annetts hit the conversion to reduce the Lymm lead to 17-10 at half time.

In the second half we saw a different Wirral as they quickly reduced the deficit to four points with another penalty from Annetts.

Lymm persisted with their high kicks downfield one of which was dropped. 

Lymm's centre, Richard McIlvory gathered and ran in from 30m to give Lymm an 11 point lead, 24-13 after 57 minutes.

For the rest of the game it was Wirral who were pressing. After a well-executed backs move, James Annetts cut through the Lymm defence to score close to the posts.

He converted his own try to reduce the deficit to four points.

Back came Wirral spending long periods in the Lymm 22m area but could not cross the whitewash.

A number of penalties, some kickable, were turned down as the away team turned the screw.

A penalty was given 3m out and quickly taken by Rob Pearl, back after injury, who smashed his way over to score.

Another conversion from Annetts now gave Wirral the lead for the first time 24-27.

With nine minutes to go, Wirral maintained pressure on Lymm who strove to the end to achieve a winning score but the Wirral defence played as one and kept Lymm out.

After their first half performance and a 17 point deficit, Wirral were fortunate to come away with a win and keep them in the running for second place (currently fourth) in this highly competitive league.

After two weeks on the road, Wirral are at home next week against another Cheshire side, Stockport.