Herts Middlesex Merit Table 5 Cup - Prelim Round - 2 Dec 2017
Tabard took to the pitch on Saturday eager to retaliate for their recent 16-10 loss to the visitors, and managed to prove themselves early with two well-earned scores, from superstar winger “V” Grygny and fly-half Offredy, within the first quarter.
Tabard were penalised heavily for handling errors and were put to the test at scrum time over and over again. Props, monster Matt Dudley and Aaron “the step” Dixon, both in “navy, red & gold” for the first time, managed to hold their own against a much improved Cuffley scrum, but Tabard will do well to work on their ball retention ahead of the next round.
Cuffley shortly returned with two scores, but strong ball-carrying from unstoppable Jermaine Ijieh just before the break saw Tabs finish the first half under the posts and 2 points clear.
From the restart, close support play from Tabards loose forwards, Alex “Waldo” Walton, snoozing Sam Bunning and big Braddon Webber, took the game decisively into the visitors twenty-two, and Scott “safe hands” Tomlin was able to slot captain, Jack Calnan, into a gap in Cuffley’s defence for Tabard’s fourth.
The second half soon became Tabards’, as returning fly-half / inside-centre dream team, Henry Offredy & Jason Freeman, were able to produce some creative rugby, and with the help of outside-centre dangerous Danny Olashore in his debut Tabard appearance, winger “V” took Tabs across the line for the final time.
Throughout the game, Cuffley, under pressure, utilised the boot to regain lost territory. But excellent defensive play from dynamo David Caulfield on the wing and, T’s Man of the Match, full-back Greg Walton, ensured that the visitors were punished every time.
Tabard finished strong, two tries clear but pinned down in the bottom corner. Cuffley gave everything they had in their attempt to push over the line for a final score, but relentless defence from jumping John Sholtz, Richard “Gilly” Gill and golden Garry Walton paid off, and the visitors were kept at bay until the final whistle.
The home side will have plenty to work on before the next round of the cup, but it’s clear that Tabard 2nd XV are keen to make up for a slow start to the season and have the talent and passion to produce an exciting season of rugby.
1. Aaron Dixon
2. Jack Calnan (T)
3. Matt Dudley
4. Richard Gill
5. John Sholtz
6. Sam Bunning
7. Alex Walton
8. Braddon Webber
9. Scott Tomlin (C)
10. Henry Offredy (T)
11. David Caulfield
12. Jason Freeman
13. Danny Olashore
14. “V” Grygny (T, T)
15. Greg Walton (C)
16. Jermaine Ijieh (T)
17. Garry Walton