Rugby Union: Charlie is Titans’ darling as brother set to move

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Rotherham Titans 34

Plymouth Albion 31

As Rotherham’s coach Alex Codling begins his preparations for Sunday’s clash at Bristol, he will again have to cope without two influential players at Clifton Lane.

Welsh forward Rory Pitman was injured again during the thrilling contest against Plymouth which Rotherham won in the last minute following a second penalty from goal kicker Garry Law.

No 8 Pitman was taken to hospital after being hurt on 25 minutes, and it is feared that he has broken a collar bone and will be out for the season.

Codling, it seems, will also have to complete the Championship campaign without full back Fergus Mulchrone who broke a bone in a foot during training before the game.

Mulchrone might already have played his last game for Rotherham anyone because it is understood that he has signed for Premiership club London Irish.

It is also thought that Mulchrone will be joined at Irish by centre Eamonn Sheridan who is expected to leave Rotherham after only one season.

However a major contribution from a player who has confirmed that he will be remaining at Clifton Lane that helped to turn Saturday’s contest after Plymouth threatened an upset.

The tries on 40 and 58 minutes by scrum half Charlie Mulchrone, plus his all-round play, demonstrated yet again that Titans possessed a top class No 9 and one who may eventually join his brother in the Premiership.

His sharp mind and physical agility stopped the rot after Albion had fought back from 14-0 down to lead 28-21 on 53 minutes.

Rotherham were in deep trouble after weak defending conceded four tries on 20,35,45 and 53 minutes so when full back Garry Law converted Mulchrone’s second try to make it 28-28, it appeared that the Titans had regained the initiative.

The pack won plenty of ball and created several positions close to Plymouth’s 22 from which they should have scored, but Albion defended effectively, so when Plymouth gave away yet another penalty on 75 minutes, hopes rose that Rotherham would seize the chance to go in front at such an important period.

Law’s successful kick put his side ahead 31-28 but just when it appeared that Titans would cling to heir narrow lead, they allowed Plymouth to come back again.

The penalty kick by Paul Roberts on 78 minutes levelled the scores at 31-31, but with the tension mounting as Rotherham’s forwards continued to attack, an entertaining game produced another unexpected twist.

Rotherham pressure forced Plymouth to concede another kickable penalty on 80 minutes, so Rotherham now had one final chance to win the closest of contests.

Law’s calmness and accuracy with the boot guaranteed Titans’ sixth Championship which keeps them seventh in the league.

Rotherham Titans: Law, Doneghan, Sheridan, Nonu, Homan, McKinney, C Mulchrone, Gadd, Stagg, Denman, Thomas, Sanderson, Rieder, Makaafi, Pitman. Replacements: Hannan, Kilbane, Davies, Freeman, Kirwan, Blackett,Williams.

Tries: Mulchrone 2, Penalty, McKinney; conversions:Law 4; penalties:Law 2.

Referee: John Meredith.