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Enniskillen 1XV 3
Portadown 1XV 7
Enniskillen 1st XV had a disappointing outing at home last Saturday as they hosted Portadown, coming away with only a losing bonus point in a tight 3-7 contest. Leading for most of the fixture after an Adam Lendrum kick at goal, Skins failed to capitalise on their dominant territory and possession, leaving them trailing at the final whistle after a Portadown try from a brief venture into the Enniskillen 22.
Enniskillen looked comfortable in the first half, moving the ball well in open play and managing a few long range line breaks through Gavin Warrington and James Ferguson. Skins struggled to gain the upper hand in the scrum which was a tight contest throughout, but pressured the Portadown line out well through James Carleton and Gavin Parke, while retaining their own ball. Territory came Enniskillen’s way often as Portadown indiscipline at the ruck allowed Lendrum to kick Skins deep into the opposition half. The visitors however did well to disrupt Enniskillen’s maul, their most potent weapon of late that has been the base of numerous scores, leaving Skins with only 3 points from the boot of Lendrum to show from multiple periods of pressure on the Portadown line. Portadown back row Gary Hall saw a yellow card for repeated infringements but Skins still failed to cross the line with the advantage in the first half. The additional loss of stalwart second row David Buchanan and centre Angus Keys to injury presented obvious disruption.
The second half went more in Portadown’s favour as Enniskillen’s defence lacked the determination shown in the first half and a number of defensive lapses in the middle of the park had Skins back inside their own 22 despite tenacious work from Matty Dane to shut down the opposition attack. This along with repeated infringements from the home side meant they were increasingly under pressure on their own line. Eventually midway through the second half Portadown crossed under the posts after repeated carries at the Skins line. Enniskillen made a big push now for a score in the final quarter but lacked composure and their line out stuttered as they tried to build a platform in the Portadown half. Penalised again Enniskillen tried to reclaim possession in the dying minutes but Portadown kicked to touch to end the contest.
Enniskillen will be bitterly disappointed with the outcome but the festive cobwebs were evident and the side were far from at their best. They will hope to find their form again as they face a tough task away to Ballyclare this Saturday.