Two’s March On
By Matt Marriott
29 - 24
Another beautiful day greeted us as we arrived at HQ prepped and ready to take on Lewes. Their results so far had been a mixed bag, so we were not really sure quite what to expect, but we weren’t to be disappointed. Lewes kicked off and immediately put us under pressure, great phase play smashed the ball into the 22 and even stout defending couldn’t keep the blue and white hoops out. And when more powerful and skilled rugby from this burly opposition, saw the huge centre break the line and feed his supporting runners to take the score to 0 - 12, things were looking grim indeed!
We had to score next, and started to look threatening with ball in hand. Cooke started creating holes and finding territory with his cultured boot, until slowly but surely up the pitch we worked, building pressure of our own. Dan Stewart was the final hero as he scored his first try for G’s, and got us on the board. Beautiful rugby followed as Cooke again walked through a hole, oh so nearly going over, but quick recycling, saw the phases build until the defence ran out and Casey crossed under the posts. 12 - 12! Real control from G’s, saw a great passage of possession force three penalties in the Lewes danger area, which Cooke slotted with aplomb, to take us clear. 21 - 12 at half time!
Make no mistake, this was an excellent Lewes side, who’s large and powerful midfield and speedy wings, posed massive questions. Thomas and Stewart in the centres were fully employed in repelling incisive and well drilled attacks, but it was a clever kick through, by the Lewes 10, changing the direction of play which finally caught our defence out, and the wing cruised in wide on our left. Another Cooke penalty seemed to have put us in control again but taking nothing for granted, we entered the last quarter determined to keep the oppo shackled. Oli Brown was electric all match (An amazing restart take was one of my highlights) and was a constant thorn in Lewes’ flesh in both attack and defence and Tom Halligey was back at his barnstorming best, with a couple of enormous trademark handoffs to keep the crowd happy and entertained. It was Tom who really turned the screw when a dominant five yard scrum walked the ball over for a fine pushover.
Any thoughts of an easy last 10 were completely destroyed however, when a fine break down the Lewes left, saw the winger streak away to score under the posts to leave the score at 29 - 24 and left us with work still to do. This was made harder when poor discipline saw a penalty kicked to touch five yards out and the pressure was really on! Fine work on the floor from the G’s big boys, saw the ref blow for a Lewes infringement and the danger was averted. Ref called last play and Cooke capped a great day by nudging the ball into touch to end a great and well matched game.
Cooke was brilliant at 10, I was so proud of our rather makeshift tight five, Ryland was magnificent all game (Even saw a smile with his banter at one point), but my MoM goes again to Oli Brown who is fast becoming a wonderful rugby player! DotD goes to Dan Stewart who was so unfit he had to come off to be sick!
Another home game against Rye next week! Please get your availability sorted asap!