|Blackheath – 1st Team||28|
|21st Apr 18||3:00 pm||National League One||2017|
|25 Kidbrooke Lane, London SE9 6TE, UK|
Blackheath – 1st Team
Herriott and King reign supreme as Club power to parity
On a dark damp day in December at College Meadow, the Old Elthamian backs, and Dom Lespierre in particular, had ripped Blackheath asunder and set the hosts on their way to a resounding 32-7 victory,
Now, on this dry, sunny afternoon in spring, the Elthamian right-wing would again leave his mark, but on a day perfect for running rugby, and in front of a sun-drenched Well Hall crowd in excess of 1,600, it was the Club front-row who, in the reverse fixture between these near-neighbours, would return the favour and ensure honours even across the two matches.
Hayden King, Matt Miles, Danny Herriott, and later Mike Perks, were simply magnificent, giving their opposite numbers a torrid afternoon and setting the platform for a first half which saw three Blackheath tries, before winning the three penalties in the second period that stretched what had become a narrow lead into a winning one.
Joe Carlisle had given OEs the early advantage, the fly-half kicking three points as the visitors enjoyed territory in the opening ten minutes. But Blackheath’s first sortie across the half-way line saw Jack Walsh (who had led his side on to the field to mark passing 150 appearances in Club colours) dummy across the gain line from line-out ball, and as the hosts probed at close-range, Markus Burcham off-loaded to Leo Fielding for the first try.
Devin Montgomery made the break that enabled Harry Bate to cut inside and send Tom Stradwick rumbling across for a second score, and although Hamish Barton responded with a try for the visitors, the skipper and open-side finding space on the left flank as the OEs pack drove off line-out ball, it was Blackheath who finished the opening period in the ascendancy.
With tempers beginning to fray in the heat, the hosts opted for a five-metre scrum from a penalty infringement and with the solid platform, and good driving work from Bate at open-side, Stradwick found a hole to dive over for his second try which, with Joe Tarrant adding a second conversion, gave the Club a 19-8 lead at the break.
Nevertheless, it was an advantage that would be all but whittled away within twelve minutes of the re-start.
As Walsh headed to the sin-bin for not retreating, opposite scrum-half Ollie Claxton moved blind off line-out ball to scamper across on the right flank, followed soon after by Lespierre in the same corner as OEs exploited the extra space, reducing the arrears to a single point.
However, following a lengthy break for James Clarke to receive treatment for an ankle injury (the referee fortunately able to continue) the Club pack re-tightened their grip and, forcing a series of collapsed scrums, enabled Tarrant to strike the three penalties that moved Blackheath clear, Lespierre’s second try coming too late to threaten the outcome.
Tries: Fielding, Stradwick 2
Conv: Tarrant 2
Pens: Tarrant 3
Tries: Barton, Claxton, Lespierre 2
|13||Markus Burcham (Capt)|