Derby travelled to Portway, looking to build on last week’s exciting victory over Sandbach.
Derby suffered an injury in the warm up, with Ryan Manning forced to drop out of the game. As a result, Partick Culligan made his debut on the wing. Tom Taylor-Dawes returned to the side along with Josh Tilford. Josh Bingham and Oli George came onto the bench, alongside another debutant, Ben Lee.
Derby kicked off, on a beautiful sunny day. They immediately won a scrum against the head and then stole a Birmingham & Solihull lineout. This led to a penalty for Derby, which George Castledine slotted over.
The lead didn’t last long, as Birmingham & Solihull scored their first try, after 5 minutes.
Derby continued to attack and McGrath Van Wyk looked to have scored, but a foot in touch cut the celebrations short.
Derby did score, after 18 minutes. A spell of pressure sucked in the Birmingham defence and when the ball was sent down the line Sam Tebbs took advantage of the space to score.
5 minutes later, Birmingham & Solihull took the lead again, with a converted try.
The score remained 12 – 8 in Birmingham & Solihull’s favour until 5 minutes before the break.
Those final 5 minutes proved costly to Derby, as Birmingham & Solihull scored twice in that time. Both tries came from Derby lineouts, as the ball was lost and Birmingham & Solihull took advantage to score. 1 conversion made the half time score 22 – 8 to Birmingham & Solihull.
12 minutes into the 2nd half and the game was gone for Derby as Birmingham & Solihull had 2 further converted tries to extend the lead to 36 – 8.
Derby did not let their heads drop and continued to press. After 66 minutes they almost scored, when a good break from Josh Tizard took him clear. Unfortunately, a good tackle from a Birmingham & Solihull defender dislodged the ball from his grasp as he was about to score.
Derby had other half chances, but every mistake was punished by a clinical Birmingham & Solihull side, who scored 3 further converted tries.
The final whistle saw a deserved victory for an excellent Birmingham & Solihull side, in particular the Number 8 Jadwat was outstanding.
Derby had the Birmingham & Solihull scrum in trouble all afternoon, but were unable to turn the advantage into points on the board.
Bournville arrive at Haslams next week.
Come on Derby !
Match Report by Richard Bambra