Derby Women’s Rugby Union 44-24 Nottingham Trent Women’s Rugby Union: Derby day triumph for hosts
Words by James McCormick.
It was derby day delight for Derby Women’s Rugby Union team, as they won 44-24 in a hard-fought contest against rivals Nottingham Trent.
The home side ran out as 44-24 winners in the Midlands Conference Cup, and deservedly so after a second half that was dominated by the home side. The first period had been back and forth, with Monique Gabbidon opening the scoring for the visitors before they went two tries to the good.
It was brought back successfully, with Olivia Barber drawing level and Ellie Dooney restoring the lead for Derby.
Coral converted following Dooney’s try and Barber’s second took the home side into half time with a 22-10 lead.
Their good first-half work was undone within minutes of the restart as two converted tries swung the scoreline in favour of Nottingham Trent.
At this point the game turned on its head and the home side kicked into gear. Marie Wantt scored the first try of the half, putting Derby ahead before Dooney ran half the pitch in an immense solo effort to score her second try of the match. While it was a brilliant moment of individual play, her ecstasy soon switched to disappointment as it was disallowed.
Barber added another to her tally soon after as her and her team mates kept their feet firmly on the gas. Breaks out of the Nottingham Trent half were few and far between, but there was concern for the hosts when Gabidon went to ground with an injury.
Following a period of treatment on the pitch, she stayed on and added to her already excellent performance by scoring two tries. The opposition had struggled to cope with her all game and she had taken full advantage of it. The result of the match was put beyond doubt as Coral went over in the final minutes as Derby to seal an impressive victory.