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Coventry (9) 26 v Worcester (21) 36

Coventry went into the match with high hopes of avenging their league defeat at Worcester on the opening day of the season, but they had to give best to a thoroughly professional outfit.

They paid the penalty for unforced errors in the first half and though they got to within two points of their opponents in the second period, they slipped further behind in the last quarter.

Fly half Steve Gough, who took his personal points total to 164 for the season, kicked three first half penalties but Coventry conceded 21 points through poor tackling.

Rob Myler touched down behind the posts in Worcester's first attack after 13 minutes, then after 25 minutes the visitors scored the first of their two tries from close range lines out.

Prop forward Mark Linnett was driven over by his fellow forwards for the first and then in stoppage time from an identical position second row Richard Denhardt was the man who got the touchdown. John Liley converted all three tries.

Coventry, smarting from a half-time pep talk, livened up their supporters with two tries in the first ten minutes of the second period. The first was a fine move which began on the right touchline. The ball was switched left, full back Wayne Kilford broke through the line and the left wing Andy Smallwood hared forty metres to touchdown near the corner flag.

Then in the 9th minute Gough intercepted a Worcester pass to spring fifty metres to the same corner. His first conversion attempt sailed wide in the stiff facing breeze, and his second came back off the post.

But when it looked as though Coventry were gearing up for a remarkable comeback victory they were hit by another score. Myler again found a way through Coventry's defence and Liley had a simple conversion to stretch the score to 19-28.

Liley added a penalty goal and though Gough converted a try by Mick Curtis, Worcester rounded off with a freak score when Simon Morris touched down after Niall Malone sliced a drop goal attempt yards wide of the target.

It was Worcester's first match at Coundon Road and they became the first team this season to win there.

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Coventry: Kilford; McAdam, Robinson, Curtis, Smallwood; Gough, Dawson; Sharp (Crane 78), Addleton, Kerr, Whitley, Fountaine, Crofts, Horrobin, Eves.

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CWN / Sport / Rugby / Coventry RFC / 14 Nov 98

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