Hellingly 10 - Old Mid-Whitgiftian 26
After a couple of years without any cup activity Mids were back in a cup with a Junior Vase match away to Hellingly RFC!
Mids knew this was not going to be an easy draw as their opposition were sat at the top of Sussex 1 with five wins out of five so far this season! Mids however were looking forward to the trip and despite missing a number of regular player were excited to see what their new look side, including 1st XV debutants Adam Dyer, Dave Perry and Dave Bouchard, could offer.
Mids got off to a solid start and had an early chance to take the lead through the boot of Dave Perry who going into this game had a perfect record for the AXV of 9 kick out of 9. Unfortunately his record was not to continue as the kick went wide. Mids however were soon off the mark when after ten minutes of the game played inspiration captain, Ali Hall, crashed through a crowd of defenders to break the deadlock. Normality was returned as Perry converted to put Mids 7 up!
The Mids youthful back line were very sprightly in attack with Man of the Match, Marc McEvilly, looking like scoring every time he ran at the Hellingly defence. The Mids second try however was a carbon copy of the first when after 20 minutes Ali Hall found himself crashing through again. Dave Perry's conversion came back off the post. Mids led 12-0.
The 12 point lead did not last long as Hellingly were next to score as a couple of missed tackles allowed them to score and convert to narrow the gap to 12-7.
Hellingly continued to pressurise the Mids defence for the remainder of the first half however just before half time the referee, who was only 22, sent a Hellingly player to the bin for a high tackle.
Mids started the second half on the front foot and were making the most of their man advantage. They soon took the score to 19-7 when George Daniels touched down off of the base of the scrum as it stormed over the line. Dave Perry again with the conversion.
Hellingly refused to roll over and were showing just why they had started their season in such strong fashion however the Mids defence remained strong stopping attack after attack. Hellingly eventually settled for the 3 points from a penalty to take the score to 19-10.
From the restart Marc McEvilly produced the moment of the match as he sprinted after the restart and flew through the air to get a hand to it and as the referee was about to signal for a knock on he somehow managed to gather the ball before it hit the ground putting Mids back on the front foot in the process.
Mids were to spend the majority of the game camped in their opponents half however Hellingly were always a threat on the break and it was a nail biting last 20 minutes for the Mids supporters who had made the long trip to Sussex.
With less than a minute to go the Mids scrum which was camped in the Hellingly 22 won a scrum against the head although they were unable to capitalise on this due to an infringement from Hellingly. Even though the Mids knew that taking the kick would seal the game they opted for another scrum. One last big effort from the pack was justifiably rewarded with George Daniels, who was having an armchair ride at the back of the scrum, scoring his second try of the match. Dave Perry converted to give Mids a 26-10 victory.