With DMPRFC lying in second place in National League One and visitors Ampthill & District RFC in third, the contest at the Northern Echo Arena was bound to be a titanic clash and so it proved, with the result in the balance until the last five minutes.
Both teams were fielding strong squads for the game and although the Internet pundits had the home side as slight favourites, it was always going to be tough.
DMPRFC seemed to be on song from the outset, as within a minute the home backs broke deep into the heart of the Ampthill defence and only a debatable forward pass to the last recipient Garry LAW prevented an early score which would have been under the posts.
It wasn't long however before DMPRFC registered the first try of the afternoon.
Some clean lineout possession was gained within the visitors 22-metre line and the ball whisked across the backline to Adam RADWAN, who faced with one defender in front of him and his opposite number covering, hauled them both of them (pictured) over the line for the score (5 - 0). Although the angle was tight to the touchline, home fly half Warren SEALS converted (7 - 0) to give the home side and early lead after only 5 minutes.
Ampthill shook off the early bus ride soon after and enjoyed long periods of possession, battering away at a resolute home defence in an attempt to redress the arrears.
Home flanker Matt Heaton was sin-binned after fifteen minutes for a red zone offence during a sustained attack on the home line. However, more Amptill pressure failed to conjure a try during the period of his absence , so there was no change to the score when he returned to the action.
Two penalty attempts by visiting fly half Lawrence Rayner sailed agonisingly wide, before Ampthill levelled the scores just prior to oranges, when winger Nigel Baker latched onto a catch and drive lineout, running around the outside to score after 36 minutes (7 - 5), Rayner adding the conversion (7 - 7).
With the game in the balance at the break, the decent crowd in attendance were full of anticipation for the resumption of the game.
For the first 10 minutes after the interval, during which both sides introduced replacements, both teams tested each other to the limit, with some big collisions in midfield, where for DMPRFC flanker Dave Fisher was prevalent.
Ampthill took the first punt for the win, when Rayner put his side ahead with a well struck, long range penalty (7 - 10).
On entering the final quarter, the game erupted, with 3 tries scored in a 20 minutes period.
First home prop Adam Brocklebank forced his way over from close range, taking DMP ahead (12 - 10) and Seals added the conversion to push them further ahead (14 - 10).
With the home side only four points ahead, this never seemed enough and so it proved when a determined break through several home defenders by a visiting second row, saw Ampthill skipper Maama Molitika receive the pass which took him to the line (14 - 15), easing the visitors ahead by one point, with only a few minutes left.
Ampthill tried to keep it tight for the remainder, but DMP always seemed capable of the break out of defence.
With very few plays left, DMPRFC broke upfield and when stopped 10 metres inside the visitors half, home scrum half Ruaridh DAWSON chipped over the piece, with Adam RADWAN giving chase. When all seemed lost as the covering defender was between RADWAN and the ball, the home winger's acceleration won the day, cruising to the ball and picking it up in mid forward roll for the touchdown, taking ahead (19 - 15). The icing on the cake was provided by Man of the Match Warren SEALS who converted from the touchline (21 - 15) and a thoroughly deserved win against tough opponents,
Next week - Fylde RFC (A)
Updated 10:19 - 11 Dec 2017 by Tom Bulmer