Old Albanian exude confidence in Fylde victory

PUBLISHED: 06:40 30 November 2016

Sam Lunnon outsprints the Fylde defence. Picture: NEIL BALDWIN PHOTOGRAPHY

Sam Lunnon outsprints the Fylde defence. Picture: NEIL BALDWIN PHOTOGRAPHY

Archant

Old Albanian Rugby Club picked up their sixth win of the National One season with a 32-17 success over Fylde at Woollams.

Nick Foster charges clear with Sam Lunnon in support. Picture: NEIL BALDWIN PHOTOGRAPHYNick Foster charges clear with Sam Lunnon in support. Picture: NEIL BALDWIN PHOTOGRAPHY

Albanian were able to field probably their strongest side this year against the Lancastrians and this allowed them to remain in ninth position in the league after a competent performance against sturdy opponents.

It took nearly half an hour before OAs were able to stamp any sort of authority on the contest even though they had a good 70 per cent of position and possession.

But if control was missing at this time, confidence certainly wasn’t and three mighty scrum efforts let all know that the visitors might be in for a torrid time.

Yet it was Greg Smith, the Fylde fly-half, who opened the scoring with a penalty.

Nick Foster goes over for Old Albanian against Fylde at Woollams. Picture: NEIL BALDWIN PHOTOGRAPHYNick Foster goes over for Old Albanian against Fylde at Woollams. Picture: NEIL BALDWIN PHOTOGRAPHY

Harry Bate made his presence felt, forcing his way over in the left corner. He then combined with Sam Lunnon to allow Ben Palmer his penalty on the half-hour.

Lunnon’s next break opened the road for Nick Foster who tore over from 20 metres out.

Palmer converted superbly against the breeze to bring the score at the break to 18-3.

Eight minutes into the second period, Albanian rush defence dislodged the ball which fell into the path of Max Malins whose powerful acceleration took him over on the left.

Harry Bate makes a surge forwards. Picture: NEIL BALDWIN PHOTOGRAPHYHarry Bate makes a surge forwards. Picture: NEIL BALDWIN PHOTOGRAPHY

Again Palmer improved expertly and he did the same when Lunnon was driven over by the pack for the bonus point.

Anthony Bingham and Jake Pope both crossed for Fylde late on, Smith converting both, but the match had been put out of reach by then.

OAs travel to Coventry on Saturday, a side sitting just two points and three places above them in the table.

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