Match Report for Westcliff game
By Adam Faherty
Match Report for Westcliff game
After a couple of weeks’ break, Rochford resumed their season with an away game at Westcliff, and we arrived on damp and cool April morning for an elongated game. Due to the date coinciding with the Essex Festival, Coach Russ was not present so were under the tutelage of Rob and Andy.
Captain Scott won the toss for Rochford to kick off and as there was light drizzle in the air, the teams traded scrums due to a succession of knock-ons and although Rochford shaded them, the boys were unable to make in-roads into the Westcliff half before Westcliff took the lead. Rochford kept pressing the Westcliff defence with Scott and Barnaby, in particular driving at their heart and making good yardage. However, Westcliff were next on the score sheet, but this prompted Rochford to greater endeavour and after some good pressure and attacking from Jack on the wing, Johnny O scored through a pick and go from a ruck, though unfortunately Johnny D injured his hand in the melee. This was the last meaningful action of the first quarter and so ended with Westcliff leading 10-5.
Both teams made a number of changes and from the kick off, George made a good catch and the ball was passed to Harri on the wing, but he couldn’t quite evade the last defender. However, Rochford were not to be denied for long and soon equalised after a fine run from Luke P set up Christian, though Westcliff soon retook the lead with some good play across the pitch.
Rochford now started to impose themselves on the game and took the lead after a weaving run from Kieran and in addition were showing some strong defence with Luke C, Tom, Barnaby, Connor and Luca making some great tackles in the middle and then were able to extend the lead through a typically powerful run from Luke P. This was soon followed by a weaving run from Luca.
Subsequent to this Scott made another strong run and set up Christian to make the score 30-15 in Rochford’s favour, and we completed the scoring for the first half through some good interplay between Harri and Luke P before setting up Kieran to end the first half at 35-15.
After a brief interlude, the teams resumed the contest and the next period was very even, before Westcliff moved the ball well across the pitch to score and then while pressing for another, Rochford won the scrum and Johnny O fed Kieran who ran the whole length of the pitch to level the period, with the overall score at 40-20. Tom and Jamie were combining well in their new positions in the middle and moving the ball to Kai and Freddie on the wings, but neither side could break the deadlock, so this was how the third period ended.
The intensity of the game was starting to tell on some of the players from both teams and Luca had to withdraw through injury and this led to some space being created in the Rochford defence which the Westcliff full back was able to exploit to devastating effect by scoring 4 tries. Rochford kept pressing through Tom, Luke and Johnny D and finally Luke P managed to break through. Westcliff were not to be outdone, and managed to break through to level the score at 45-45 to conclude the scoring.
Thanks goes to Westcliff for hosting the game at short notice and for refereeing a game which was played in good spirit and was a great advert for local youth rugby.
Next week we conclude our cup campaign away at Woodford.
Final Score Westcliff 45 – Rochford 45
Kieran 3, Luke and Christian 2, Luca and Johnny O, 1 each.
Men of the Match Scott and Tom