Old Cents today struggled to play their normal expansive game on a very muddy Stade de Bridge playing surface. They also came up against a determined and plucky High Wycombe side who had to defend all afternoon.
In fact Wycombe turned up with only 16 players and were up against it from the start.
Cents never looked like losing this latest fixture especially when they scored two quick tries inside the first 10 mins and it looked that the home side might have gone on to record a big score.However, Wycombe settled and dug in with a fine defensive rear guard action plus they were helped by the conditions which suited their bigger ball carrying forwards.
Cents scored their first two tries through Rob Jones who showed good footballing skills to convert a chip over the Wycombe defence by Lewis May and the other through a try mark break by Liam Hemming.Liam also converted his own try and after 10 mins Cents led 12-0.Despite having the vast majority of the ball and territory Cents did not score again until well into injury time of the first half,then Sam Preece scored the home sides third try after a catch and drive by the Old Cents forwards following a lineout near the away sides goal line.The try was not converted and Cents led 17-0 at the break.
Cents had completely dominated the first half and Wycombe were rarely seen in the home sides half.Cents were playing their normal fast expansive game but had been thwarted by the conditions which made handling treacherous plus Wycombe defended in depth and on the edge for most of the first half.
The second half was more or less a repeat of the first half were by Cents dominated for most of the 40 mins but were hampered by the conditions which had affected their free style of expansive game and the dogged defence of the Wycombe side.Like in the first half Cents scored in the first minutes of the half when Rob Jones scored his second try after one of the few flowing backs moves of the game,the try was not converted and Cents led 22-0 plus they had the all impotant bonus point secured.
The Home supporters expected a few more scores but they never came no matter how hard the home side tried in the conditions that were getting worse as the match wore on.The only other score of the match came in the dying minutes when Wycombe scored on the stroke of full time.Wycombe broke out of defence to score a try which spanned the length of he field play and the home side would have been proud to have scored it themselves.The try was not converted and th final score was 22-5 to Old Cents.
Cents now have a weeks break and it is well desreved after a string of nine unbeaten matches which has seen them maintain a top two place.Plus the home sides pitch needs a rest and rolling to give the type of surface Cents need to play their brand of fast open rugby on.Cents next match is against Marlow away and this will be another tough fixture back on the road, however the week's break might also see some of the home sides walking wounded back in action.