Rayner stays cool to tie it up for Reds

The Rugby Paper - - National League 2 South - ■ By BEN RO­DEN

THE points were shared in a tough open game at Scot­land Lane.

Hen­ley led through a Con­nor Mur­phy penalty, but Reds re­sponded when Alex Har­vey was driven over af­ter a catch and drive. They ex­tended the lead with an Ol­lie Cony­beare penalty, but Mur­phy nar­rowed the gap with a penalty of his own. The Hawks were on the board next when prop Dave Man­ning crashed over from a line-out, Mur­phy con­vert­ing to make it 13-8 at the break.

Reds had a great break from Dan Fry, who gained ground and Cony­beare landed the en­su­ing penalty. Henry Bird was on the board next, mak­ing the most of an op­por­tu­nity to race over for a con­verted try. It was end to end and Hen­ley ral­lied, re­place­ment Matt Tib­batts show­ing strength to score the lev­el­ling try.

The next points came the Hawks’ way af­ter re­cy­cled ball from a li­ne­out. Tib­batts was cred­ited with the touch­down un­der a pile of bod­ies, Jack­son land­ing the touch­line con­ver­sion to put them ahead again.

Reds used the lit­tle pos­ses­sion they were win­ning to fash­ion a fi­nal try. A break from dan­ger­ous Bird led to re­place­ment Scott Par­sons cross­ing, Oli Rayner con­vert­ing to level. The fi­nal min­utes were fran­tic and great de­fence pre­vented fur­ther scores.

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