THORNBURY were forced to settle for a draw on Saturday as they surrendered a 24-12 lead in their league clash with Old Centralians. 

Jack Pinker kicked a penalty to open the scoring for the visitors before they extended their lead with the first try of the match. Jake Wood made a fine break from a scrum and ran to the ‘22’ before passing to Alfie Richardson who scored in the corner.

Pinker’s excellent conversion saw the lead extend to 10-0.

Acting scrumhalf Mike Priday and Richardson prevented a certain score using their great pace to haul down the right winger who had raced clear close to the line.

However, it was Thornbury who nearly scored next when Pinker, Wood and Richardson combined to put Patrick Romano clear but a good covering tackle bundled Thornbury’s wing into touch.

Old Cents cleared then attacked and the dangerous right wing was this time able to score out wide. Thornbury’s lead was reduced to 10-5.

Three minutes later that lead disappeared completely when the left wing raced around the Thornbury defence and kicked ahead before the second row crashed over. The conversion put Old Cents 12-10 up.

In the dying moments of the half Thorns regained the lead. Mike Beswick and Mike Johnson showed good determination to take play into the home ‘22’ before the ball was moved wide where Kieran Sparrow scored in the corner. Pinker converted and Thorns led 17-12 at half time.

Thornbury’s third try came after ten minutes in the scond-half. They attacked down the right in a move from halfway and some soft hands was eventually finished off by Harrison Bellamy for his first try for Thornbury. Pinker converted for 24-12.

Several Thornbury players struggled with knocks and cramp and Old Cents took control of the game in the latter stages.

It was only a matter of time before Old Cents scored and their forwards provided the goods from a driving lineout. The conversion made it 24-19.

Further injuries hit and Mike Johnson was withdrawn from the pack to play on the wing. Old Cents smelt blood and scored an unconverted try to tie the score.

Thorns survived a nervous final few minutes to ensure they took two points from the contest.

They remain second in the Regional 2 Tribute Severn table with 22 points from their five games.

They are next in action on October 14 when they host league leaders Royal Wootton Bassett Town.