On Saturday Harrow travelled to Roger Banister Sports Centre to play their rearranged home league match against Kilburn Cosmos. In another disjointed and flat display, with perhaps unsurprisingly the players clearly with more than one eye on the National Junior Vase Final due to be played in a couple of weeks, Harrow nevertheless ran out winners by 26-20 against a highly motivated Kilburn Cosmos who host their own Cup final next week when they play Hackney in the Final of Middx Federation Vase (the County Competition won last season by Harrow) Although Harrow outscored their opponents by four tries to two, discipline was again an issue with three home players (Nick Argent, Adam West and Andy Elliott) spending 10 minutes each in the bin. This meant that for nearly half the match Harrow played with fourteen men as we consistently got on the wrong side of an increasingly irritated referee. That is clearly an issue that has to be addressed and no one should expect success at Twickenham in a fortnight if we can't keep players on the field for the length of the match.
The scrummage continues to be a real strength for this side but for the second week in a row the line again failed to function. Matters weren't helped as there was no Chris Armstrong (rested because of injury)and Shane Togher, suffering with flu went off at half time.
The score at half time was 6-5 to Kilburn with two penalties to our opponents and the Harrow score a try by Simon Bram. In the second half Harrow lifted their game with further tries by centre Howie Gosling (his third in three matches), full back Derek Byrne and openside Adam West, all converted by Gary Conroy. Kilburn replied with two converted tries of their own but it wasn't enough and Harrow ran out winners by 26-20
There were some positives however to take out of the match. We won, we scored four tries and secured a bonus point, we played better than last week (although that's I can assure you is not saying much). Paul Carroll, who has been missing for the last couple of weeks because of holiday, got a good run out and Dave West out with injury for seven weeks since the Old Isleworthians match on 3rd March had a really strong game before being replaced after 70 minutes. That is great news both for the player and the team and must now put him in with a strong chance of at least being in the match squad for Twickenham. Finally it looks like with two weeks to go the coach and skipper will have all players fit and available for selection. The final cut for Twickenham will not be easy and some players are clearly going to be disappointed but all those who have taken part in this seasons league campaign over nearly eight months have much to be proud off.
And it was then back to the Grove Field to receive the Championship Plaque from Middx Vice President Brian East with the photographs on the website
The league game next week against London French is now off with the result to be shown as a 0-0 draw with 2 points to be awarded to each side.
This will mean that Harrow will have won the league by nine clear points (89 to 80) and with a points difference over second placed OMTs of 295 points (607 to 312) having scored 788 points and only conceded 181
Overall an excellent campaign which for understandble reasons after the Brockworth semi final ended up with bit of a stutter.
Two weeks to go. Roll on the 5th May