East Grinstead vs Edenbridge
By Lisa Godfrey
A Comeback to be Proud of!
by Chris Bradbury
East Grinstead racked up 50 points, in a dominant display against a dangerous and organised Edenbridge side.
Grinstead put together a total, and increasingly mature performance, as they faced the only team to have beaten them this season. Edenbridge are a team that pose many threats, and none more so than their giant centre, who has speed to match his size. The plan to nullify this threat had been agreed, and early on Sid Evans laid down a marker with a crunching tackle on half way!
Edenbridge opted to kick off, and this proved a good decision, as under early pressure Grinstead were turned over, and Edenbridge were looking hungry and strong. Unfortunately for the visitors, during the early contact, they lost a player to injury, and he left the field. We wish him well, and hope that his injury isn’t too severe. After the short break, Grinstead were beginning to get into the game, and a fine move was finished off in the left hand corner by the flying Finlay Neill - TRY!! 1st blood East Grinstead, 5-0.
Quick hands from Edenbridge from the restart, saw a rapid response, as backs and forwards combined smoothly to post an almost instant reply. TRY!! 5-5 Game on!!
What a great start to the match, both sides looking strong and determined. The injury count was mounting in an increasingly physical encounter, as off came Zach Bradbury for Grinstead from the bottom of a ruck. Jack Jacobs coming on in his place. Sometimes the best form of attack can be good defence, as demonstrated by Ozzy, as he forces a turnover, and combines with the rampaging George Naylor for a wonderful score. TRY!! 10-5 Grinstead.
The resultant restart was fumbled by Edenbridge and pounced upon by G’s skipper Iain Galbraith, who offered the outside to the opposing winger, and in a moment of class, slowed, showed and changed up a gear to ease past and score another. TRY!! 15-5 Grinstead.
Edenbridge now are galvenised by this score, and mount a constant and prolonged attack into the Grinsead 22. The boys with backs to the wall dig in deep, and eventually see out the pressure, and even manage to break free, resulting in Ozzy scoring another for Grinstead. TRY!! 20-5 Grinstead.
As mentioned earlier Grinstead had managed to keep the Edenbridge boys at bay with some dogged work under pressure, and unfortunately for our visitors, the constant threat of their outside centre was removed, as he temporarily left the field with a calf injury. Big George Naylor was a threat of our own all morning, carrying the ball with real intent at any opportunity, as he deservedly crashed over the line for another score. TRY!! 25-5 Grinstead.
The boys are now really appearing to enjoy their rugby, combining well and making good progress up the pitch and working well for each other at the breakdowns, and being determined in defence. With the Half Time whistle nearly upon us, Grinstead find themselves once again deep in enemy territory, and this time its returning player Beau Brimicombe who sees a gap to the right of the ruck, and scampers over to record another for the home side. TRY!! 30-5 Grinstead.
- HALFTIME –
The second half begins and Edenbridge secure good ball from the kick off, and go instantly on the attack, whatever was said at half time seems to have worked, as our visitors have their tails up, and our camped in our 22. Quick thinking catches the home side napping, and instantly Edenbridge record another well deserved score. TRY!! 30-10 Grinstead.
Edenbridge are clearly making the better start to the second half, as the home side lose possession from the restart, and we are putting ourselves under pressure here, as we struggle to get into the game. The ever impressive Ozzy makes another great hit, and this time it's Skipper Galbraithe who storms away to record another, albeit somewhat against the run of play. TRY!! 35-10 Grinstead.
The game now evens out for a while, as both sides compete determinedly for midfield supremacy, as rucks and counter rucks are plenty, in an absorbing and breath taking passage of play from both sides. What a game this is!! From one of the rucks the ball is spread wide, and Zach Bradbury drifts past one defender before timing his pass out to Ozzy who sprints away to score another. TRY!! 40-10 Grinstead.
This is a bruising encounter played out by two sides hungry for victory, yet played out in a wonderful spirit, in front of a good crowd of supporters. Edenbridge are now looking good and enjoying another extended spell of possession, this leads them deep into Grinstead territory, and from their resulting penalty quick thinking from Edenbridge sees their impressive centre crash over from close range as the G’s seem to have temporarily switched off – although having said that you’d be hard pressed to stop him from there!! TRY!! 40-15 Grinstead.
The boys seem not to have learned from this passage of play, as only minutes later exactly the same thing happens again. More sustained attack from Edenbridge results in a penalty given, and the same player crashes over again TRY!! 40-20 Grinstead.
Time to wake up lads. This game is by no means over yet…. However with time running out for both sides, it is Grinstead who finish the match the stronger, as galloping Galbraith secures his well deserved Hat Trick, and pushes Grinstead that little bit closer to safety. TRY!! 45-20 Grinstead.
There was still time left for one outstanding moment of individual brilliance to top off this wonderful team performance. Step up Harry Smart Williams. Dancing his way through the ever eager Edenbridge defense, Harry was untouchable, and dotted down to great applause and excitement. TRY !! 50-20 Grinstead. The game now well and truly out of reach, the boys refused to give up; when under pressure once more Grinstead do well at scrum time, and secure the ball against the head – well done Luca! Yet still Edenbridge continue to push forward, with the last play called, the visitors try a well weighted cross field kick, only for the on rushing attack to unluckily knock on, bringing an end to a tumultuous match that saw the U13’s put together a performance to be proud of. Now just the small matter of Hastings and Bexhill away next weekend……
ZACH BRADBURY. SID EVANS. IAIN GALBRAITH (capt.) GEORGE NAYLOR. JACK HEARN. MAX GODFREY. JACK JACOBS. NOAH ROBERTS. MATTHEW COX. LUCA LYNN. HARRY SMART-WILLIAMS. BEAU BRIMICOMBE. AUSTIN LANGANDOEN. FINLAY NEILL. JULES JARDIM. CALLUM HICKEY. FELIX GRIFFIN. CONNOR JONES.