Old Brentwoods Progress to John Adler Cup Final 2018
Tough Game, Hard Conditions, Great Competition
Old Brentwoods travelled to Billericay RFC for the Semi Finals of the John Adler Cup 2018, the mighty 2's arrived with confidence and enthusiasm on a miserable cold and wet day. The toss was won by Billericay who opted for the kick and OBRFC opted to go up hill in the first half.
Kick off and the game generated momentum through the OB's forwards, spreading the ball into the backs as quickly as possible due to the conditions. It was definitely running game type of day instead of passing, however the experienced head in Barry O'Connor, Adam Grace & Wally Smith moved Ob's up to halfway. The conditions worsening all the time and the pitch cutting up underfoot, the forwards were sluggish around the park compared to their opposition, getting their hands in the rucks, slowing ball and getting turn overs. When Billericay did get the ball their tendency to kick short and over the top, played into the OB's Defence with Josh Turrell & Aaron Knapp defending/collecting balls behind the back line.
The conditions continued to play havoc with ball in and with knock-ons from either side, however every time Billericay kicked deep to push OB's back, the back three of Ryan Barker, James Sullivan and Tim Mason were flawless in catching the balls and turning possession into attacking go forward.
Working up the hill the OB's forwards started to get pods going with Charlie Raymond, Dave Alder and Will Mead leading the charge. We started to tire the defence, and Billericay's back line getting drawn into the contact area. This passage of play allowed for quick ball out to Tim Mason to cut a hard line towards the post and crash over the line, Ryan Barker stepped up and slotted the conversion. End of the half 0-7 OB's.
With a short pep talk from Capo, Andrew Parish and Adam Grace, the plan was to pin them in their half and use the conditions in our favour with the hill. OB's with the kick off Liam Talbot chasing the high ball pinning Billericay into their own 22, several phases on play allowed them to move up the field however a knock on and turn over and the ball was spread wide and Wally Smith ran in from the edge of the 22, Ryan Barker getting the conversion, Score 0-14.
Then came a period of possession from Billericay making hard yards through their forwards, a huge defensive shift was put in by everyone. However after several phased the line became disjointed and the Billericay went over for the score, missing the conversion. Following this OB's had a try disallowed when Will Mead swapped to 8 for a scrum set piece, Billericay continued to use their forwards and replacements well to wear down the OB's defence and make their way up the field. Eventually crashing over for another try, the conversion was scored making the score 12-14.
After several plays backwards and forwards between the two side the OB's team forced a turnover, opting for the scrum with only a couple of minutes left to play. Another penalty was called and the referee called last play, Barry O'Connor taping and kicking out into play to secure Old Brentwoods 2nd XV's place in the John Adler Cup Final 2018.
MOTM - Josh Turrell (Always providing a option runner and the amount of tackles made)
DOTD - Dan Savidge (Being on England Duty)
We wish Billericay the best of luck with the rest of the season, and I am sure the results will go their way with performances like that.
OBRFC 2nd XV Captain