Dreadful conditions, dreadful game
By Andrew Smart
Harrow unable to rise above the dirge
A successful years figures reported at the Financial AGM where the club showed a healthy profit of over £9,000- followed by a most enjoyable President's Lunch where over sixty people sat down to a very tasty chicken and leek pie with assorted vegetables, followed by a chocolate and pear pudding, cheese and biscuits, and then tea and coffee. A horrible day outside and but in the club room a most enjoyable lunch with good friends, decent wine and, great beer
Thanks as always to Linda for the super food, to Lisa and Lois for their help in the kitchen, to Goose and Debbie for all their hard work behind the bar. Thanks to our President for organising the lunch to Lesley again, Magoo, Jon and Rod for spending their Friday setting up. It was all worth it and we who attended are most grateful
I must say thank you to John Dietman and Clive Lander for once again so generously sponsoring the two barrels of Cuthberts, thanks also to Lesley, John Batten and Clive Lander for their generous contributions to the raffle
It was a shame that the match we had all come to see was so dreadful. The conditions were quite awful which didn't help and of course it was hardly surprising that the players struggled but it was the same for both teams and once again Harrow will know that ultimately they have no one else to blame for losing to a limited Datchworth side. Once again our game management was at fault. Its all well and good trying to move the ball at every opportunity but we are easy to defend against if we offer nothing else. Just spread across the field and wait for us to make a mistake. There was almost no variety in our play, no effective kicking game which the conditions cried out for, looking to put the ball behind our opponents and make them play from deep, not enough work around the fringes to keep their back row honest On a dry day in good conditions the quality of Harrow's backs might well have secured a comfortable victory but despite all the possession and territory we never looked like we were going to breach a determined defence. It is enough to say that playing with the elements in the first half the home team managed to turn round 0-8 down. Conceding a try in the 19 minute from a kick that failed to make touch, comfortably gathered by their right wing. The kick chase wasn't good enough with only one player up to put pressure on the catcher . Easily beaten he was now behind the cover, ball moved left and the opposite winger was in at the left hand corner. Difficult conversion missed. 0-5. It was the visitors only real moment of fluidity in the whole game. At 31 mins Harrow were penalised in front of their posts 0-8 which was the score into the break
Armitage-Brain with a smartly taken drop goal from 30 metres got Harrow back within one score but that was to prove their only points of a desperately disappointing match and whilst it was enough to give the home team a losing bonus point it should have been more. Plenty of effort, plenty of commitment and absolutely dominant in the scrummage, but ultimately Datchworth scored the only try and for that and their defence they deserved their win.