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By Jamie Arrowsmith Monday 17 December 2012 Updated: 17/12 12:22
Birmingham Exiles 3 Trinity Guild 12
Midlands Five West (South)
BIRMINGHAM Exiles failed to find any Christmas cheer in their final league game of 2012 on Saturday when beaten by Trinity Guild.
The two sides shared an almost identical league record going into the game and that was reflected in open play despite the visitors' overall greater bulk in both forwards and backs.
Exiles' backs showed greater mobility at times but the boggy nature of the pitch did neither side any favours.
As it was, all of the points scoring came from the boot with the visitors profiting from the greater accuracy of their kicker.
The first penalty fell to Exiles but Alex Warrillow was off-target, unlike Trinity's James Mainwaring who opened the scoring when presented with a similar opportunity in the 12th minute.
Exiles were not short of possession, and two penalties took them deep into Trinity territory but the subsequent move failed with a knock on.
Play moved back to the home half and Mainwaring slotted his second penalty, adding a very well struck third from the touchline soon after.
Exiles knew they needed a score and they got one just before the break when left Alex Warrillow got them on the board with a well-flighted penalty.
Warrillow was just off target with an early second half penalty as play resumed, but the follow-up was good and at last Exiles put some pressure on Trinity's line with Johnstone going close but a knock on ended the move.
Guild then moved up field and put Exiles under pressure, at one point being held up over the line, but dogged defending eventually allowed Pinfield to clear.
Both sides were conceding too many penalties, and from one such, the dependable Mainwaring kicked his fourth goal. A late penalty attempt by Johnstone that would have given Exiles a losing bonus point was just off target.
Exiles are scheduled to return to action on January 5 when they entertain Aldridge in a friendly.
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