Strong spirit and character in defeat
Poor availability and injuries all round but a performance that the score doesn't reflect
Take nothing away from Beaconsfield, they were strong, quick and decisive, they scored tries from all over the field, defended well and from an early stage, the result was not in doubt. However, the Dragon’s Teeth played a full part in what was an exciting and enjoyable game.
Beaconsfield from the first whistle attacked from wide and deep, after 10 minutes they had opened up a 12 point gap. Both tries coming from wide after spirited defensive play in the 'Ensians midfield forced the Beaconsfield fly-half to use width rather than brute force.
Despite the early setback, the DT's battled back and Chris Betts barged over from close range to close the gap to 5 points after fly half Roddy Clark slotted the extras.
Unfortunately, Beaconsfield scored straight away from the re-start, some dire tackling gifted them a score under the posts which was easily converted. 19 - 7.
A better passage of play followed from the Dragon’s Teeth. Short phases from the forwards coming around the corner and attacking in the same direction, allowed a sustained period of possession and 'Ensians were fighting their way back into the game. Set pieces were functioning well, and platforms were starting to be provided from which attacks could be staged. A dropped ball however gifted possession back to Beaconsfield and as we were now all too aware, the punishing Beaconsfield back line didn't need much of a chance to capitalise, cantering in from long range to stretch the lead to 26 - 7.
Roddy Clark slotted a penalty just before halftime to take the score to 26 - 10. On paper looking at the scoreline, it may seem an odd decision, however, it was a true reflection of how the Dragon’s Teeth were clawing themselves back into the reckoning with points that at the end of the day could have been crucial.
After halftime, this hope was snatched away from us. Beaconsfield scored 3 tries in 8 minutes and the score was 41 - 10 and victory now realistically out of sight. This didn't dampen efforts or spirits, however. Sam Longley sent barrelling over to complete his umpteenth try of the season. Fly-half Clark adding the 2 points. 41 - 17.
Bodies were now starting to fail. ‘Ensians lost Matt Edwards to his problematic ankle injury after he chased and ran everything for 60 minutes, a truly heroic display. Shortly after, Alex Hodgson was dragged off with a bang to the head. With only one replacement (who shall remain nameless for risk of divorce), 'Ensians finished the game with 14 men. They did, however, continue to put phases together nicely and looked genuinely threatening when going forward. There was no heroic fight back however and Beaconsfield ran in 3 more tries before the final whistle to finish the day 58 - 17 victors.
The score shows a very convincing win for Beaconsfield, however, it doesn't show the spirit and character that the DT's showed. Excellent phases were put together and some intelligent play.
Tries: Betts, Longley
Cons: Clark (2)
Match report by Tom Ansell