Towcestrians 1st XV 12 V Hertford 1st XV 67
Hertford due to league position were tagged as favourites for Saturday’s trip to Towcestrians
and the Hoe Lane side produced an assured display to confirm there was no deviation from that script. With a mix of skilful handling and physicality they scored eleven tries and never allowed their host’s to get any sort of foothold in the game.
The visitors showed four changes from the previous week’s fixture with Dan Belton (great shift) coming into the back row and Arron Lowe in the 13 shirt, on the bench were front row Josh Hewitt and covering the back division Rory Seymour, both deserved debutants on the back of some strong performances for the 2nd XV.
Hertford drew first blood early as their half backs Ben Creasey and Ben Lloyd combined well to put a flying Sean Taylor into space and the full back was unstoppable as he careered in for the score.
Minutes later with Hertford giving the ball some welcome air, it was swept from right to left and a tidy pass from Lloyd gave the opportunity to flanker Ollie Cain to finish with determination for his first try at 1st XV level.
As if to evidence that nothing can be taken for granted Towcestrians hit back with a try of their own but it was a bare respite as Hertford scored again a short while later when big lock Tim Matthews seized upon a loose ball in the home sides 22 to plunge over for the try.
Hertford then registered the bonus point through a penalty try, with the Hoe Lane men having the measure of their counterparts at the scrum set piece, a rumbling forward movement towards the home line was illegally interrupted and the official walked under the posts.
The Hertford eight were at it again minutes later as a huge surge saw number 8 Torran McDougall control the ball at the rear of the scrum before comfortably cashing in for the try.
With the confidence of their start Hertford moved the ball well and scored twice more before the half time break. Firstly in another swift move centre Lowe used a delightful fend to create space for himself to outpace his chasers and score his first try in this league for Hertford, then Matthews received a lovely offload from prop Geoff Hughes and the second row with a head of steam up finished powerfully. 5-43 H.T.
Hertford with Hewitt and Seymour now on the field commenced the second forty in much the same fashion as the first, another flowing move created space in the home defence and Lowe was the beneficiary as he galloped through to the right of the sticks. It got better for the centre as almost immediately, slick ball transference split a weary back line and Taylor gave the ball to Lowe in acres of space who dotted down for his hat trick.
It was perhaps understandable that after this the level of intensity dropped a little but with no loss of control of the proceedings by the Hert’s side and it was them that caused the scorer to pick up his pen as another destructive scrum saw McDougall pick and feed Creasey who in turn slipped the ball to Taylor and he carved through to grab his second.
A late Towcestrians try speaks louder of their spirit than words possibly can, but it was Hertford that rounded out the scoring for the day.Another attack was launched from deep within their own half at pace which led to Lowe cleverly passing to Seymour who sccoted down the left wing for his debut try. Taylor on a tricky wind landed five conversions with two more points from the penalty try.
Happy bus on the return trip home made better by the news of the 2ndXV win against Henley, bit of strength in depth,yes, coaches headache, yes, but a good one to have.