Brown gets his kicks as Worcester seize their lifeline
Worcester 22 Leeds 15
Saturday 05 February 2005
James Brown kicked Worcester away from the foot of the Zurich Premiership table with 17 points last night against Leeds, who were distinctly second best in the crucial forward exchanges.
Brown kept his head when Leeds had been allowed back into the game after two clearance kicks - one apiece from Matt Powell and Giscard Pieters - had been charged down, resulting in second-half tries for Andre Snyman and Tim Stimpson.
Having squandered a 13-point lead, Worcester had their backs to the wall and Leeds were back to within a point. But from 16-15, Brown banged over two vital penalties to settle Worcester's nerves and determine the outcome.
The significance and manner of Worcester's win was not lost on their head coach, Andy Keast, who said: "We know we can compete with the best and the score didn't reflect our superiority. The whole squad has a never-say-die attitude."
From the opening exchanges, at a packed and vocal Sixways, the Leeds scrum was in dire difficulties. Having missed with his first penalty, Brown, when offered another kickable chance, opted for a line-out drive. The Worcester forwards rumbled towards the posts for Tony Windo to get the touchdown. Brown converted and the Warriors were on their way. Although Stimpson pulled three points back with a penalty, Brown struck twice with drop goals and added another penalty before the half was finished.
But the defining moment of the half came when Leeds flanker Andrew Parks was sin-binned for foul play. Mercifully for his team, they only shipped three points while Parks was in the cooler.
Leeds clawed their way back into the game after the break, but Mark Regan was then yellow-carded and their revival all but disappeared. The home forwards celebrated by re-establishing their momentum and the Tykes were gone.
Worcester: Try Windo Conversion Brown Penalties Brown 3 Drop goals Brown 2. Leeds: Tries Snyman, Stimpson Conversion Stimpson Penalty Stimpson.
Worcester: T Delport; D O'Leary, D Rasmussen, T Lombard, G Pieters (G Trueman 63); J Brown, M Powell; T Windo, A van Niekerk (C Hall 69), C Horsman, P Murphy (T Collier 68), C Gillies, D Hickey, P Sanderson (capt), B Macleod-Henderson.
Leeds: I Balshaw; A Snyman, P Christophers, C Bell (D Rees 55), T Stimpson; G Wright, ADickens; M Shelley (K Fullman 45), M Regan, R Herber, C Murphy (S Hooper 55), T Palmer (capt), S Morgan, R Parks, C Rigney (P Uys 65).
Referee: D Pearson (Northumberland).
Phil Jagielka: I may never win back England place, says Everton defender
Mario Balotelli: Staff at arson-hit Manchester Dogs' Home convinced Liverpool striker is behind five-figure donation
Rio Ferdinand mocks Jamie Carragher's Liverpudlian accent... but Liverpool man hits back at Londoner
Colombian women's cycling team kit that makes wearer appear naked is branded 'unacceptable' by UCI president
Just like Cristiano Ronaldo and Manchester United, Gareth Bale says he hopes to return to Tottenham 'one day'
- 2 Friends 20th anniversary: Alison Jackson photographs reunited cast
- 3 Friends 20th anniversary: The highs and lows of the cast's careers since 2004
- 5 Free U2 album: How the most generous giveaway in music history turned into a PR disaster
Daniele Watts: Django Unchained actress detained by Los Angeles police after being mistaken for a prostitute
Scottish independence referendum: A nation divided against itself
Scottish referendum results: Cross-party consensus collapses amid Tory-Labour spat on the 'English question'
Scottish independence: David Cameron is becoming the 'George Bush of Britain'
Russia freezes Ukraine into submission: Kiev admits country doesn't have enough fuel for winter
Scottish independence: The Queen breaks silence on referendum debate – as think tank warns of £14bn black hole if Scotland votes Yes