Rugby: Harlow youngsters learn hard lessons in cup
Rugby / Tue 5th Oct 2021 at 01:57pm
Sunday 3rd October 2021– Waterfall Cup: Harlow U16s 27 v 55 Romford U16s 55:
THE first home game of the season is here as we hosted Romford in what is set up for a tough game against a big side. Several of our players knowing some of the Romford players from their time together in the DPP/PDG Essex/Saracens sessions.
The game got started with a couple of tries from Romford, the first came after Harlow were on the attack and lost the ball in contact close to the Romford line as they moved it wide quickly. The second from period of pressure on our line taking the score to 12-0.
Harlow were to open their account with an Ed Lea turn (turnovers were key today with a special mentions to Corey Kelman, Owen Eynon, Montelle Levy and Jamie Oliver and a few others who I didn’t make notes on.) over near halfway. His pop to Tolu Ajibabi saw the Harlow number 8 streak to the try line. The second try came as Harlow applied pressure on the Romford line with a series of penalties. Harlow moved it wide with some great hands for Kai Young to ground the ball. Joseph Pankhurst converted to level the scores 12-12 and game on!
Subs came on to the pitch, Joseph Williams replaced Felix Waugh and Danny Billington replaced Charlie Jacques.
Harlow continued to take the game to Romford continued pressure saw a Romford player yellow carded for persistent offside in the red zone. With Jack Rushworth in control of the pack. From a tap penalty he fed Ben Ferrier who powered over the line and put Harlow ahead for the first time 17-12.
Romford are a strong and skilful side and came back at Harlow from the kick off a few Harlow mistakes saw Harlow trying to soak up the Romford pressure. The broke through and scored 17-19.
Matt MacFarlane replaced Tolu Ajibabi until half time as Tolu strapped his ankle.
Continued Romford pressure saw them score twice taking the score at half time t0 17-29.
Half time 17 – 29.
The half time team talk reflected that this was a game of quality between two skilful sides. Harlow needed to be on their game to compete as Romford would take advantage of our mistakes. Concentration is key.
Harlow spent the first period of the second half defending and unable to get their hands on the ball and play. Tackles were reigning in, but Romford were able to get a few tries on the board putting some daylight between the two teams and some great conversions. 17-55.
Griffin Clark came on as both Tolu Ajibabi and Matt MacFarlane had picked up injuries and Jamie Oliver moved into the back row.
A big hand to the under 13s who came over to watch the end of the game when their game finished and provide some excellent support.
The spirt of this Harlow team is in there deep, Harlow were not done and now it was their time to get the ball in their hands. Jack Rushworth stole the ball at the base of a scrum the forwards we quick to secure it and the backs moved it wide to Montelle Levy who crossed the whitewash.
Towards the end of the game, Harlow were able to put the pressure on Romford and from a tap penalty Ben Ferrier showed great whit line awareness to touch down and score Harlow’s fifth try of the day. 27-55
Great games this week from several players Alfie Dutnal and Joseph Pankhurst amongst others tackled their hearts out, I’m sorry too many to mention put their bodies on the line, having been beaten by 50 points two years ago without Harlow firing a shot, we can see how much these players have developed and they are not done yet! There is more to come from outfit, and we will continue to get better as individuals but more importantly as a team.
Final Score 27 – 55
Next week Harlow Under 16s have their first festival, the Golden Boot tournament at Brentwood with many of the top teams in Essex at our age group attending to play in a fully competitive tournament.
This looks to be a cracking day of rugby. Bring plenty of water and nourishment to keep you going through the day.
Kick-off is likely to be early and the details will be confirmed later this week.
Tries: Tolu Ajibabi, Kai Young, Ben Ferrier (2), Montell Levy
Conversions: Joseph Pankhurst
Referee: Andrew Richards, London Society