OBB Lge 1 - A&C V MARLOW
By AL LEWIS
Hail and gales
OBB league 1 - A&C away, 17 Mar 19
A much deserved win.
It’s been coming, and just so pleased for the squad to see one through and get the W.
With a good number of squad injuries, we were to bare numbers to make a challenge, though A&C only managed 15 on the day. It is always windy on the tops, and today no exception, which allowed flurries of hail to also grace us!
Against the breeze in the first half, we kicked off and reclaimed the kick as it held up in the breeze, and quickly built multiple phases and retained possession well. From a early pen, we opted for 3pts. Good opening.
Our defence and line speed was good all day, and put them under pressure. Any territory kicks they tried were fielded well by Stan Gibson and either he or Zack Brewer made decent yardage returns with mazy runs.
A&C had us camped in our 22 at times, but D was resolute, and only a quick tap pen undid us, and now trailed 7-3.
But back we would come, and keen to keep the tempo high, we ran most pens which no only retained possession but also took away the windy lineout lottery. After more hard running, Luke Mantle was adjudged held up over the line, but moments later and another tap pen he crashed over out right. Extras missed against the breeze, but 7-8 up into half time.
Not much to change really, just keep playing and bring in other attacking options, whether width off Titans, tip ons, or dummy runs to hold their hard hitting tacklers. We held them up for mauls probably 4 times and i can remember only one against us, testament to on-field calls by those closest.
From more mid field pressure, Oly Kemp pinched an intercept to charge in from 40m, extras added, 7-15.
He almost had another as we swung right and last minute overhead pass fumbled over the line. Consecutive scores for him, and both against previous clubs of his.
And with Harry Fryer cramping as much from another heroic back row effort as lack of salt in his hungover body, Oly moved to back row, with Thom Findlay almost dancing away with his first touch (adjudged a forward pass, from 30m away and after mass appeals).
A&C kept coming, and had a few lineouts 5m out but we held firm. We then undid ourselves a little, when a sharp mid field back play and break saw Stan race to half way, only to throw an intercept as our supporting players flooded forward. 14-15.
Grand stand finish then?
If we could keep them pinned deep we should be ok. Or maybe sneak a kickable pen? One breakout, saw captain for the day Travis Pretlove (or Trevor as the ref called him) totalled the flying winger and sheered the pitch side flag (damaging himself in the process).
But we would hold on, the final play coming deep in their 22.
Full time 14-15