Depleted Doncaster Phoenix beaten in Shropshire

Joe Lowick powers through for Doncaster Phoenix. Picture: FSP Images
Joe Lowick powers through for Doncaster Phoenix. Picture: FSP Images

A depleted Doncaster Phoenix side battled valiantly but suffered a 43-5 defeat at Bridgnorth.

Long-term injuries, player unavailability and even international call-ups saw Phoenix hit the road for the long trip to Shropshire in a makeshift state.

Late changes to the forward pack and a young back line ensured it would always be a tough away trip.

But form went out of the window as Phoenix started strongly and matched the hosts stride for stride and, despite conceding an early try, they kept in the game by responding with a forward pushover try on 20 minutes.

Bridgnorth added a second try but a yellow card against Phoenix on the stroke of half time was the real deciding factor.

The hosts extended their lead early in the second half while they held the numbers advantage and it was always going to be difficult for Phoenix when chasing the game two scores behind.

Bridgnorth were strong in defence and Phoenix could not cross the line again.

But that did not prevent them from having a good go and they fell just short on a couple of occasions.

In an effort to press for a score, Phoenix were vulnerable to a strong counterattack from Bridgnorth, who went on to secure a relatively easy win.

Phoenix face Broadstreet for the first time in a league fixture as they look to return to winning ways and give themselves a platform heading into fixtures with Burton, Syston and Derby, who all sit in the bottom third of the division.