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Southall fires treble in Malvern derby win
9:20pm Monday 23rd April 2012 in Rugby
EMPHATIC Malvern completed the double over local rivals Hereford with a 31-3 away win in National Three Midlands.
Relegated Hereford raised their game and Malvern’s repeated first-half forays into home territory were repelled by stout defending.
It took 20 minutes for the deadlock to be broken despite Hereford having a player sinbinned for a deliberate knock-on.
Adam Dixon slotted a penalty but the hosts responded in similar fashion through Dean Powell three minutes later.
Malvern then charged upfield and a Hereford tackler did not roll away, allowing Dixon to restore the advantage with another penalty. The Wyesiders put in forward phases to get deep into Malvern territory but the visitors turned the ball over.
Tom Longley broke upfield and the ball went across the line for James Southall to sprint through and score out wide.
With the advantage of the slope in the second-half and superior fitness levels starting to tell, Malvern stayed well in control although they continued to be a little wasteful.
The pack, superbly led by skipper Matt Williams, continued to dominate and allowed the backs plenty of good ball.
From a hack-on, Longley broke and the ball went to Ryan Watkins, who ghosted through and then the floodgates started to open.
The final quarter saw Malvern play dazzling rugby and Southall was again on hand to score.
From the restart, Malvern gathered and ran the ball through for Ieuan Mustow to get on the scoresheet. The final flourish came four minutes from time as Mustow made a telling break to put Southall in at the corner for his hat-trick.
Skipper Williams said: “We knew they had nothing to play for but pride and made us work hard for the win.”