Planet Rugby

Eagles see off Georgia

18th November 2013 09:12

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Todd Clever USA RWC 2011

Captain: Clever

A late penalty from fly-half Adam Siddall secured the USA's first win in a year as they overcame Georgia 25-23 in Tbilisi on Saturday.

Merab Kvirikashvili opened the scoring in style for the hosts with a penalty and a converted try in the corner in the opening fifteen minutes.

The Eagles responded well, however, after speedster Folau Niua chased down a kick deep in Georgian territory to win a lineout.

The pressure told, and Saracens winger Chris Wyles was sent over for his side's first points.

Kvirikashvili and Siddall then exchanged penalties, before the visitors scored a superb try.

Wyles again showed his pace, bursting some fifty metres downfield before finding captain Todd Clever. Clever offloaded well to the supporting Blaine Scully, who beat the last Georgian defender and touched down under the posts.

With Siddal's conversion, the USA had a narrow 15-13 lead at half-time.

Another fine try for the visitors, albeit through an unlikely source, saw them extend their lead shortly after the break.

Prop Nick Wallace caught out the Georgian rearguard with a dummy, and had the pace to reach the line from around forty metres out.

The hosts hit back moments later, as last-ditch defence from Scully failed to prevent Merba Sharikadze scooping up the loose ball and dotting down.

Another three-pointer for the Georgians saw them draw ahead 23-22 in the closing minutes, before the Eagles won a penalty over forty metres out.

The New Zealand-born Siddall, enjoying his first start in the Eagles number ten jersey, stepped up and made no mistake from the tee to give his side a morale-boosting away victory.

Scorers:

For Georgia:
Tries: Kvirikashvili, Sharikadze
Conversions: Kvirikashvili 2
Penalties: Kvirikashvili 3

For USA:
Tries: Wyles, Scully, Wallace
Conversions: Siddall 2
Penalties: Siddall 2

The teams:

Georgia: 15 Merab Kvirikashvili, 14 Tamaz Mchelidze, 13 David Kacharava, 12 Merab Sharikadze, 11 Tedo Zibzibadze, 10 Lasha Khmaladze, 9 Giorgi Begadze, 8 Giorgi Chkhaidze, 7 Mamuka Gorgodze, 6 Shalva Sutiashvili, 5 Levan Datunashvili, 4 Kote Mikautadze, 3 David Kubriashvili, 2 Shalva Mamukashvili, 1 David Khinchagishvili
Replacements: 16 Simon Maisuradze, 17 Mikheil Nariashvili, 18 Levan Chilachava, 19 Giorgi Nemsadze, 20 Giorgi Tkhilaishvili, 21 Vazha Khutsishvili, 22 Lasha Malaguradze, 23 Beka Tsiklauri

USA: 15 Chris Wyles, 14 Blaine Scully, 13 Folau Nina, 12 Andrew Suniula, 11 Tim Maupin, 10 Adam Siddall, 9 Mike Petri, 8 Cameron Dolan, 7 Derek Asbun, 6 Todd Clever (c), 5 Samu Manoa, 4 Graham Harriman, 3 Shawn Pittman, 2 Phil Tiel, 1 Nick Wallace
Replacements: 16 Zach Fenoglio, 17 Olive Kilifi, 18 Eric Fry, 19 Inaki Basauri, 20 John Quil, 21 Shaun Davies, 22 Seamus Kelly, 23 Luke Hume

Referee: Mike Fraser (New Zealand)
Assistant referees: Ian Davies, Chris Williams (both Wales)

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