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DK still striving to find top gear

By Nick Elwell | Grassroots | Published:

Director of rugby Neil Shillingford reckons Dudley Kingswinford are still some way from hitting top form despite recording a fifth win in six games.

Lineout action from DK’s win against Hereford Pic: Pete Edmonds

Saturday’s hard-fought 17-12 victory at Hereford kept the Heathbrook outfit up among the early season pacesetters in Midlands One West.

DK sit fourth in the table, five points behind leaders Newbold but Shillingford believes there is plenty more to come from his team.

“It was an improved performance at Hereford, though perhaps not the performance we were really looking for,” he said.

“It’s a tough place to go and they are a different proposition on their own patch.

“That’s not saying there weren’t a lot of positives for us to take. But there were also still a few negatives which we need to to work on.

“We missed out on the bonus point, which was frustrating. Those things are important.”

DK twice went close to opening the scoring in the early stages only to be held up on the line on both occasions.

As it was Connah Jones’s unconverted try, following some intricate passing, was the only score of the first-half.

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Sam Vaughan then scored early in the second period to make the score 12-0 to DK and seemingly put them in control. But the hosts came roaring back to level things up thanks to two tries of their own, the visitors eventually edging home thanks to Nick Adams’s score 15 minutes from time.

Shillingford, who was again forced to make changes to his team, hopes to name a more settled line-up in the coming weeks.

“I think getting a consistent team will be key,” he said. “We’ve had people out with injury and others away.

“That should start to settle down. We are definitely getting there.”

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DK have a break from league action this weekend and instead face a Friday night trip to face Bournville in the North Midlands Cup.

The hosts, who play one step above Shillingford’s men in the Midlands Premier, have recently moved to a new home in Edgbaston which includes a state-of-the-art 3G pitch.

“It’s going to be a good test for us against a big pack, which is what we need,” said Shillingford. “We take the cup seriously and will be putting out our strongest team possible. I expect Bournville to do the same.

“For a lot of the lads it will be the first time they have played on an artificial pitch. It is all good experience for us.”

Nick Elwell

By Nick Elwell
Grassroots Sports Editor

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