Blues take East Midlands crown

Joe Daniel held his nerve to kick the winning points for Kettering

Joe Daniel held his nerve to kick the winning points for Kettering

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Kettering are the East Midlands Cup winners after a dramatic last-minute victory over Luton at Bedford’s Goldington Road ground.

Joe Daniel kicked a penalty in stoppage-time to edge the Blues in front 18-16 and when the referee’s whistle followed immmediately after it brought huge celebrations.

It had looked like being a disappointing night despite a promising start.

Tom Bridgeman nipped through to score within minutes of the kick-off and Daniel’s conversion gave Kettering the perfect platform.

Penalties were then exchanged as the men from Waverley Road went in to half-time 10-6 ahead.

However, Luton were out of the blocks in the second period and a converted try put them in front for the first time.

Another three points stretched their lead out to 16-10 and it seemed as though the trophy was staying in Bedfordshire.

Kettering were given hope when a kick from Daniel saw Damien Conyard touch down in the corner.

But the conversion was missed and the game was still 16-15 in Luton’s favour.

The drama was not over, though.

The referee awarded Luton a penalty but then reversed his giving Daniel the chance to slot the winning points, which he duly did.