Ensians IV vs. Wanderers
Wanderers fall short in could win battle vs local and league rivals.
This was the toughest game of rugby the Wanderers have been involved in this season and the toughest defeat to swallow. Reminiscent of the amateur era – it had to be a difficult one for referee and a difficult one to play in. This being said, it aloud the animal in the guys on the pitch to be unleashed - something that many still relish.
In typical fashion, the Wanderers came out of the gate firing, going to the corner from a penalty that was kickable. With the lineout won comfortably – as is went for the afternoon, Wanderers touched down in the far corner after a number of phases. M. O’Toole getting over the line for what would be his last involvement in the game. After crossing the line, it soon became apparent that his shoulder had been dislocated. Redfern would come off the bench to produce a monster performance, carrying well, putting in huge hits and getting 4 or 5 turnovers. Positives from the game, which resulted with a 17 - 5 loss, with tries from Ensians winger, and two coming from their overgrown second row, were ample. The Wanderers' line out was cruising, the scrum had never been so solid (even against one of the biggest packs faced this season) and their willingness to fight to the last second. Even against the odds, after losing four men to injury meaning the last portion of the game was played with 14, they never gave up.
The obvious point to improve on, was connecting the pack to the backs. With pace, skill and form waiting outside. It was mind-blowing how the ball didn't get to them more often. Even more so, when considering that is where the tries have been coming from all season. Perhaps it had something to do with the number of injuries incurred. Most notably, Wanderers fly half S. Bowers, having had to leave the field following numerous blows to his leg - Hmm. But what was most likely is that in the rain and the muck, fast free flowing rugby was a little too difficult to pull off. Even more so against the style of play produced by a wise and experience side.
We are now into the business end of the season, where every point will count. It is important to use the upcoming free weekend to rehabilitate with some well earn rest and then get back to training - ready to fire on all cylinders against Thatcham at home on the 17th.
Tries: M. O'Toole (5")
Team: Orwin, Sparks, Roper, Bellingham, Lewis, O O'Toole, M O'Toole, Grundy, Mead, S Bowers, Taylor, Dorliac, Howard, L Bowers, Mason.
Replacements: Colins-Lindsay, Redfern, Fox.