Well done to Marlow RFC in winning a well contested match 24-0. Drifters wishes them well for the rest of the season.
From a Drifters point of view, it is clear to the coaches that as a group we are getting closer to the top teams in the county. A 26-7 loss to full strength A&C side, followed by a 24-0 loss to a full strength Marlow shows how far we have come in competing against the best with a squad size of just 22 players.
Drifters started the game well and had the best of the territory and possession in the first 10 minutes but unfortunately we didn't make the best use of it, and were not able to put real pressure on the Marlow line. On a few occasions we tried to play a bit too much rugby behind the gain line due to Marlow's aggressive and rapid fire line speed. Around half way through the half Marlow scored first following a spilled offload in the tackle, Drifters players switched off having thought that the ball was spilled forward in the tackle. Marlow, rightly, played to the whistle putting the ball through the hands, creating a comfortable overlap and scoring in the corner. Conversion missed. 5-0.
5 minutes later and strong Marlow pressure from a 5 metre scrum resulted in the second score of the game. Drifters made the tackle from quick pick up from the base but with the new tackle laws in the minds of the players a low tackle allowed the Marlow player to stretch his arm and ground the ball expertly on the line. Another unconverted try 10-0.
Just on the stroke of half time, Drifters conceded a third try. Marlow breaking strongly up the field with some heroic defence holding Marlow up 5 metres out. After breaking the line Marlow were adjudged to have scored the third try despite a brave and clever smother tackle by the Drifter's captain getting himself between the ball and the ground. The benefit of doubt going to the attacking side. 17-0 at Half time. An extremely well contested half.
The 2nd half was another strongly contested affair with Drifters fronting up to Marlow's strong and aggressive runners. Tackle after tackle was made and Drifters kept battling until the final whistle. Marlow scored 1 try in the period. Probably the try of the game as the ball was spread wide after a few phases creating an overlap and a score out wide which was converted. Some strong gutsy tackling prevented further pressure and indeed had the bounce of the ball had gone Drifter's way following a clever chip over the Marlow defence, Drifters would have had a try which their efforts fully deserved.
The big teams don't come and roll us over any more. We have learnt a lot from the last 2 games against excellent A&C and Marlow teams. We don't know for sure but we are sure that both opposition teams knew that they were in a game....
At Drifters we keep with tradition of awarding a man of the match. This week it was Josh Newton and vs A&C it was Seb Maxwell. The whole ethos of our small club is that the players work for each other, and our award is always awarded to the player that best reflects selfless and often unseen and brave work. Well done.
So we regroup and will learn and improve further but one message for the players.....the coaches are extremely proud and impressed by your attitude and application and we've never enjoyed coaching so much as we do at the moment. Keep up the good work !