Cinderford outside-half Lloyd Evans held his nerve to kick a last gasp penalty and complete a remarkable turnaround in this match, after the visitors had trailed 30-8 to Richmond at the interval.
On a cold but sunny afternoon at the Richmond Athletic ground the home side were soon on the attack, but full-back Rob Kirby was off target with an attempted penalty kick at goal. The opening score soon followed for the home side, when No8 Joe Burton charged over for a try, which Kirby converted. Kirby then made amends for his earlier miss with a successful penalty, before Cinderford began to make some progress into their opponents territory. They made a hash of a good attacking lineout opportunity before centre Jack Adams created the space for winger Sam Baker to touchdown for an unconverted try in the corner.
Two more penalties from Kirby pushed Richmond further ahead, before Evans made it 16-8 with a kick at goal after 33 minutes of play.
Despite the home side’s Tom Shaw being shown a yellow card for a high tackle, Richmond crossed for two more tries before the interval, from hooker Simon Edwards and captain Rory Damant, both of which were converted by Kirby.
The second-half saw Cinderford much improved, but few could predicted what was to follow, Evans got things started when he gathered his chip ahead to score a try, which he also converted. With the visitors replacements also making a real impact on the match, the momentum of the game was beginning to swing and when Richmond’s Simon Ackroyd was shown a yellow card for a deliberate knock-on, Cinderford set-up an attacking lineout from which Marcus Brown was driven over for a converted try after 73 minutes.
Evans then repeated his earlier piece of individual skill, and added the conversion to make it 30-29 with just a couple of minutes remaining and when the home scrummage buckled under pressure, the young outside-half took centre stage to land the decisive penalty from 45m out and clinch a sensational victory for Cinderford.
Cinderford: – Mike Wilcox (Capt.), Alex Frame, Al Bryan, Jack Adams, Sam Baker, Lloyd Evans, Clive Stuart-Smith, Chris Bundy, Sam Wilkes, Jake Caulfield, Lance Randall, Milo Reynolds, Roger Birkin, George Mills, George Evans.
Replacements: – Elliot Booley, Luke Cole, Marcus Brown, Sam Hanks, Mark Davies.