Rugby: Wanstead duo put Upper Clapton to the sword

Rugby / Tue 19th Sep 2017 at 02:19pm

Upper Clapton

Epping Upper Clapton 9 v 44 Wanstead

FIRST thoughts suggested that this was to be a closely fought contest. After 25 minutes EUCRFC held as slim lead, having slotted over 3 penalty goals from the boot of Mitch Din. Wanstead had responded with a try by inside centre Pruce converted by fly half Coughlan. However it was this pair that went on to control the game with quite impressive freedom, not only by dominating the scoring but also the patterns of play. As the game progressed the middle of the park became their domain and their ‘avenue’ to success as many of their scoring opportunities originated from there!

Rain had helped to be a leveller for much of the first half but indiscipline and technical indiscretions had meant that Clapton suffered 3 visits to the sin bin resulting in them playing much of the half with14 men and even 13 for a short period of time. This made matters even more challenging! Clapton competed well at the scrum but suffered from a hesitant approach to lineout options. In the loose, the Coughlan/Pruce axis for Wanstead was controlling the game through clever positional play, good offloading and quick deed of mind.

Their own personal scoring contributions led to a hat-trick of tries for Pruce and a tally of 16 points from the boot for Coughlan. By half time it was 9-17 in Wanstead’s favour and as the second half progressed so did the Wanstead lead. They were just that bit more alert and aware, quickly breaking in midfield and as the weather improved spreading the ball wider too. A cross kick by Coughlan resulted in the Wanstead winger touching down for a further try in addition to Pruces’; and as a significant chunk of added on time was played out for an earlier mass scuffle, Wanstead completed the scoring with a converted team try to complete the scoring.

It was always known this was going to be a highly competitive league and other scores within it have endorsed that feeling over this early part of the season. Clapton may have believed they could have triumphed in their 2 early games but have lost both. Equally tough challenges are on the horizon for the next few weeks. Lessons will have to learnt, adjustments made and a re-affirmation of belief established in order to make any impact at this level for the remainder of the season.

TEAM: Trower, Watson, Buisson, Reynolds, Gugliemucci, Din, Barnes, Howatt, Parkin, Trevillion, Stokes, Everard, Allan, Dobbin, Sinfield, Rogers, Brewin, Brabant-Rudd

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