Old Priorians RFC 24 - 54 Amersham & Chiltern RFC
23rd September 2017
OPRFC took on, recently relegated from the Nationals, Amersham & Chiltern at Perivale this last Saturday. A well equipped and well funded team travelled to Perivale looking to maintain their early push for a top place in London 1.
The opening minutes saw the visitors push hard and OPs were fighting in defence as Jono Moore threw in some hard tackles, however minutes later and the scrum was awarded to A&C and their pack allowed a great ball to be played to their centre who crossed the line for their first making it 0-7. Again OPs passion in defence wasn’t lacking but it was only minutes later that several phases through the hands allowed the visitors to touch down again making it 0-12. There was a sense of urgency from the restart and Wellings with an incisive break took OPs into the opposition 22 for the first time, however the A&C defence managed a huge kick to clear. Again it was Joe Wellings off the back of a scrum linking with Dan Porter who charged forward only to be brought into touch outside the 22. Ari now took on the challenge of taking the game to the opposition with a series of hard tackles keeping any counter attack at bay. Despite this the A&C defense held strong, soaking up wave after wave of attack and with great audacity launched a counter attack resulting in a score, 0-19. Wellings and Porter combined yet again shortly after the restart taking OPs up to the the A&C try line, but a turnover and huge kick kept the visitors safe from any score. An A&C infraction saw OPs bravely kick for the corner but another turnover and rapid counter attack brought yet more misery for the home side 0-26. Heads still held high, Ozegovic and Maynard made some ground against formidable opposition and an interception from Ozegovic with line of sight under the posts was held up only by the refs whistle. Again A&C regrouped and pressed forward, using their huge pack to win a penalty try, and the half time whistle went 0-33.
The opening minutes of the second half again saw OPs probing for a gap in defence but with no luck, the A&C forwards using their size to bundle over and take the score to 0-40. Within minutes A&C struck again with a well worked try from their backline this time , 0-47. Resolve held firm and OPs refused to give in. Mark Makram began to cause havoc around the breakdown and cause concern to the opposition. A misdemeanour and Jono was sadly yellow carded further putting OPs on the back foot. Confidence remained high and Jack Dever yet again launched another attack with only an incomplete pass stopping the score. This time it was Barney Wellings exploiting the gaps in the defence, but an interception took A&C back to the OP try line where they subsequently scored, 0-54.
This was, however, where the tide turned. Porter with a crunching tackle conveying the message that OPs were yet to surrender at home in front of their home support. Ari breaking the line and making some great distance released Myles Stringer who crossed for the first of OPs trys of the afternoon, 5-54. Heads lifted a little and Ari with an electric chip and chase despite receiving yet again another late body check passed onto Eloi Durand who in turn passed onto Joe Wellings who finally got the score he deserved, 10-54. Jack Dever now took the game by the horns and started turning the opposition defence inside out with carving runs. Eloi seizing his opportunity at a breakdown made a 40 meter dash for the try line and despite a very cynical knee being place against his head kept his composure and scored a great try with no retaliation. With minutes to go it was left to a darting run from Si March to secure the OPs a point and quite a bit of pride.
Joe Codrington Award Winner: Dan Porter
Damo Langley Award Winner : Joe Wellings