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Rugby: Wansted 29 v 32 Harlow

Lifestyle / Thu 16th Oct 2014 am31 10:51am

HARLOW secured a win over league leaders Wanstead in a very hard fought cut and thrust game. In a very good Harlow team performance

Danny Fitzgerald came into the front row to replace the injured Cunningham. This saw Harlow produce a great scrummaging performance with equally strong contributions from front row colleagues Rob Treamer and James Ephgrave.

From the start the Harlow pack showed that they were going to dominate in all departments. Wanstead showed that they had a useful back division who could defend well under pressure. A quarter of an hour into the match Wanstead were penalized for holding the ball on the ground and Scott Whitby gave Harlow a 3 point lead. The pattern continued with Harlow exploiting their forward dominance but eventually a good break by the home side and their backs outpaced the Harlow defence for an unconverted try. With 5 minutes left in the half Harlow fly half Barney Goodey chipped over the Wanstead try line and judged the bounce well to touch down for a try under the posts. Whitby converted to put Harlow back into the lead. The in the last move of the half the Wanstead backs broke clear for a try in the corner making the score 10 points all at the interval.

Immediately on the restart Harlow were back on the attack. Goodey chipped ahead for centre Luke Bowering to gather cleanly and offload to winger Ryan McGlone who touched down near the corner. He converted his own try to give Harlow the lead 10 – 17.

Only minutes later Harlow gifted a try to level the score. When pressed back in their in-goal area an attempted clearance kick was charged down and Wanstead won the ball to score under the posts. Soon after they took the lead from a clean take at the lineout and a good inside pass to their hooker who went over in the corner. The game continued; fiercely contested, until on 60 minutes the Harlow pack set up a maul in the Wanstead 5 metre line. Kain Claridge the Harlow No.8 picked up and powered his way over for the try and levelled the score at 22 points all. Five minutes later the forwards were again applying pressure and this time it was hooker Rob Treamer who powered his way over for the try and a lead 22- 27.

More important the 4th try secured the bonus point. With the clock running down Wanstead hit back. The Harlow scrum were penalized and the home side took a quick penalty and got over for the try. Their conversion was good and they had a 29 – 27 lead. Harlow threw everything into the closing minutes. The backs attempted to find a gap but were closed down. The key point however was that Harlow kept possession and the forwards worked their way back to the corner. Again it was Claridge who forced his way over the line for the try. In the closing two minutes Wanstead again looked as if they might snatch victory. They broke away and had a clean run to the line but the touch judge’s flag was up for a foot out. Harlow won the lineout and controlled the ball until the clock ran down and the game ended with a Harlow victory 29 – 32.

This win puts Harlow into 5th place while Wanstead drop to 3rd. However it is Sudbury and Cantabrigians who are dominating the division both undefeated and with massive winning margins.

On Saturday Harlow have a key match at home against 6th placed Old Brentwoods.The match kicks off at 3pm and admission is free. If it is as good a contest as last Saturday it is the best entertainment deal in Harlow. On Sunday Harlow Ladies are due to play Cambridge at home probable kick off 2pm and again all are welcome admission free. For confirmation and details of Harlow home games visit the website www.harlow-rugby.co.uk

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