London Scottish 26 Yorkshire Carnegie 22: Play-off hopes of Carnegie suffer further blow in London

DEFEAT: Carnegie's Pete Lucock scored two tries against London Scottish. Picture: Steve Riding.
DEFEAT: Carnegie's Pete Lucock scored two tries against London Scottish. Picture: Steve Riding.
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Yorkshire Carnegie head coach Tommy McGee admitted he was “very hurt” by his side’s inability to protect an eight-point half time lead as they slumped to defeat at The Athletic Ground, Richmond.

Although mathematically the play-offs are still within reach, Yorkshire are simply nowhere near consistent enough and the end of the season cannot come soon enough.

A frustrated McGee said his side only had themselves to blame for their seventh league defeat.

“We didn’t play as fast or sharp enough as we should have done,” he said. “We looked lost at times and I’m really going to look at that because teams are going to know what to do and slow the game down against us.”

The visitors began brightly and, having won a penalty at a scrum on the Scottish 22, Harry Leonard opened the scoring with a simple three points.

Having won the ball from the back of a messy scrum, Miles Mantella’s run from deep should have brought about the opening try, but a last-ditch tackle from Christian Georgiou saved Carnegie.

After a period of attritional play, a strong effort from the Carnegie front-row won them another scrum penalty but former Edinburgh man Leonard could only pull his effort wide from 40 metres.

Scottish continued to concede penalties at the breakdown and referee Tom Foley sent prop James Hallam to the sin-bin.

Carnegie made their man advantage count when Peter Lydon made a mess of collecting a pass in his own 22, allowing Pete Lucock to show a smart turn of speed and dive over.

The eight-point lead did not last long into the second half when a powerful rolling maul had London Scottish rumbling forward and captain Mark Bright crossed and Lydon converted.

Then, from nowhere, McGee’s men scored their second try. A missed tackle coming out of a ruck allowed the fleet-footed Lucock to slip away between the posts and Leonard converted.

Carnegie were then reduced to 14 when Mike Myerscough was shown a yellow for collapsing a maul and Scottish worked the ball wide for Lydon to get their second try. His impressive conversion took the home side to within a point of the visitors.

The pressure of being a man down continued to take its toll and James Buckland’s men took the lead for the first time when Chevvy Pennycook crossed out wide following a smart offload from James Phillips.

Matt Williams’s powerful run then created a strong attacking platform from where Phillips scored Scottish’s bonus-point try.

But back came Yorkshire and with a man advantage after Neil best was sent to the sin-bin for offside, a maul allowed Josh Bainbridge to ground, but it proved to be too little too late.

London Scottish: Lydon, Williams, Hawke (Sloan 52), Braid, Mantella, Newton, Heeks (Stevenson 52), Hallam, Kwasnicki, Maidement, Brown (Phillips 47), Gillanders, Pennycook, Walker (Best 47), Bright.

Yorkshire Carnegie: Georgiou, Holmes, Vickerman (Goss 71), Lucock, Doherty, Leonard, Pilgrim (Dudman 64), Beech (Tideswell 64), J Walker (Nilsen 72), Hill (Harris 64), Myerscough (Jones 64), Smith, Beck, C Walker (Bainbridge 74), Williams.

Referee: T Foley (RFU).