“Indomitable. I was so proud of how the team worked today. Hard work brings the rewards. I am very proud.”
Wyn Tingley, Chairman
A very warm welcome for the travelling Clifton Rugby supporters was enhanced by one of the #LavenderAndBlack's best performances of the season.
Heading down the M5 motorway to face 3rd place Titans who were on a 3 match winning run might have seemed a daunting prospect for Clifton who have struggled away from home this season, winning only once on the road last September.
With 30 minutes of the match gone and the score at 17-3, the tie seemed to be reflective of the difference in league positions of the two teams.
However, the Clifton squad's work rate and commitment started to pay off; two tries in 3 minutes from Harrison and Roberts, both successfully converted by Barnes, brought the scores level at 17-17 for half time.
This brace of Clifton tries were worthy of being in the memory for a long time - the passing and running lines coupled with awareness and accuracy was applauded by both sets of supporters. It was 'game on'.
The second half started brightly with end-to-end rugby but it was Taunton who manage to break away to score with Kingdom converting his own try to take a 7 point lead (24-17).
Just 5 minutes later, Giltrow finished off an excellent move to score under the posts, the try converted by Barnes - we were back to all square (24-24).
With 5 minutes left of normal time and after 20 minutes of attacking rugby from both sides, Clifton finally took the lead with a Barnes penalty kick. Taunton regrouped and launched several attacks. Clifton eventually succumbed to relentless pressure on their try line and Taunton stole the win with an unconverted try.
Speaking on BBC Radio Bristol after the game, both Club Chairmen praised the quality of rugby on display and reflected on the apparent parity between the clubs despite their respective league positions.
Clifton Rugby made their way back up the M5 with a bonus point and even though it could be viewed as an opportunity lost, the performance was evidence of a strong team with undoubted skill and character.
The next match is at home when the team host Bury St Edmunds, on Saturday 3rd March.
Sure to be another exciting contest, the team need your support as 16th man #BeThere
Well done Clifton, you made us proud today.
#CmonClifton @cliftonrugby #Since1872
Updated 19:57 - 21 Feb 2018 by Wyn Tingley