Giants unlucky in Grand Final
Greenwich Admirals beat Guildford Giants 20 – 14 to lift the RLC London and South East Regional trophy in the Grand Final. A hard fought game contained few points and few breaks as defences ruled the day.
Guildford kicked off to Greenwich and upon receiving possession run the length of the pitch to score. The referee had other ideas and brought them all the way back for a goal line drop out presumably for a knock on. This gave Greenwich field position which they didn't give up in the first 20 minutes.
The scoring started in the 9th minute following 3 repeat sets as Greenwich passed wide to Centre Louie Newton who ran round the defence and scored in the left corner. No conversion was added for a 4 – 0 scoreline. They came hard again in the next set and got the ball wide to Angelo Thomas who pressed on the gas down the wing and scored under the posts. Chris Williams converted for a 10 – 0 lead.
Greenwich continued to press and added a Penalty on 20 minutes to extend the lead. They were nearly in again on 27 minutes as Liam Johnson went over the line only to knock the ball on.
Guildford were getting back into the match and Mark Cochrane made a clean break but the referee ruled that Matt Manning's pass was forward. A couple of minutes later Guildford did score from the base of a scrum. Matt Smith got the ball and made the break running 50 metres to score. Adam Cox failed to add the conversion and this is where it ended at half time, 12 – 4 Greenwich.
Ian Batty opened the scoring in the second half as Guildford started strongly. Off the back of a penalty on the line Ian Batty received a short pass and twisted out of the defenders grasp to touch down. Ross Brooker converted, 12 – 10 to Greenwich.
The strong defence in the middle continued but it was broken by the Greenwich attack on 54 minutes who got it out to speedster Angelo Thomas to score his second as the heavens opened. Again the ball was brought under the posts to allow for an easy conversion through Chris Williams, 18 – 10.
Guildford tried to hit back, as the deluge left puddles on the pitch, with Chris Mathers knocking on under pressure in the right corner while putting the ball down. Guildford were given a golden chance as Greenwich Stand Off Anthony Johnson was sent off for punching with 15 minutes to go this could have been the turning point. Guildford made the most of it scoring soon after through Sam Fletcher who powered over near the corner. Ross Brooker missed the conversion leaving a 4 point gap 14 – 18.
Both sides tried and had chances to score but Greenwich had the last laugh getting a penalty for offside close to the line which Chris Williams slotted over giving a 20 – 14 advantage. Despite a late charge by Guildford, Greenwich held out to seal the Grand Final.