IT wasn’t the prettiest of spectacles in the clinging conditions, but director of rugby Rowland Winter was happy with the final outcome as Coventry Rugby beat Fylde 47-3 and saw their lead at the top of National League One increase to 16 points.
Cov had to wait until the final quarter to make sure of maximum points with their first try from open play – their first three scores, bizarrely, all penalty tries – but they went on to finish with seven and a total for the season of 130 to equal last season’s club-record haul.
For Winter, it was a case of job done and now on to next week. “The most important thing was to get five points, keep taking things a week at a time, and as the most we could have got out of the game was five points, I’m happy that we’ve done that in the conditions,” he said.
“Really it was a tale of two halves, and in the second half we got the reward in terms of tries for our power game, the hard yards from our forwards, and for a little bit more direct play from everyone across the park.
“Looking back at the first half, we were working hard but without the accuracy and without the clinical edge.
“On a pitch like that I’d challenge anyone in the stand to go out there and try to walk on it, let alone run or play rugby, so you need to play in the right areas of the field.
“I thought the decision to kick so much was right, although some of our execution wasn’t quite there, especially in the first half, and we need to look at how we returned some of their kicks. I felt we lost a lot of the territorial battle in the first 30 or 40 minutes, but when we kept the ball in hand a little bit more in the second half and got a bit more direction before kicking to relieve the pressure, we were far more successful.
“I thought we struggled to adapt to the referee’s interpretation of the game and the slow, snail-pace which played right into Fylde’s hands. We were dragged down by that, so we needed to up the tempo which we did in the second half.”