|Blackheath – 1st Team||34|
|5th Dec 15||3:00 pm||National League One||2015|
|108 Charlton Road, London SE7 7EY, UK|
Blackheath – 1st Team
Late strike from Burcham gives Blackheath a share
Level on the scoreboard, though Fylde will draw the greater satisfaction, having taken a four-try bonus point after a frantic finale during which both sides had the opportunity to take maximum spoils.
Blackheath came the closest during those dying moments, Simon Whatling seeing his late penalty pushed wide by the strong gusty wind, but in truth it will be Blackheath who will have emerged the more relieved with the end result.
The Club put themselves on the back foot from the outset. A kick to touch on the full was quickly followed by a missed tackle in midfield, and as Fylde strung together the phases, Blackheath ran out of defenders for Anthony Bingham to slip across for the first try on only three minutes, converted by Chris Johnson who’d go on to kick four from six on a difficult afternoon for place-kickers.
Whatling also kicked well (seven from nine), despite his late miss, and responded with the first of five penalties, but Fylde, with Scott Rawlings proving a constant menace in midfield, moved further ahead at the end of the first quarter, as Greg Nicholls moved around the short-side of a close-range scrum.
Two further strikes from Whatling were followed by Blackheath’s best move of the opening period, as Geoff Griffiths came off his wing to send Jake Lloyd across for a converted score, briefly giving the hosts a 16-12 advantage. But in the final minutes of the half, hooker Phil Mills was driven across for Fylde, after Griffiths was yellow-carded for a deliberate knock-on, and despite more than a hint of off-side, Bingham latched on to a long hoof forward with consummate ease.
As Mills headed for the sin-bin for killing the ball on his twenty-two, Whatling’s fourth penalty reduced the arrears, but at the interval Fylde held the upper hand with a 26-19 advantage.
Blackheath showed far more intensity after the re-start and with tight-head Adam Lewis quickly following his front-row colleague to the sidelines for ten minutes reduced the deficit further. Hamish Graham, making his season debut, made a number of decent runs from deep, and in the 47th minute the full-back set up the move which saw Tom Stradwick, Tom Ellis, Aston Croall and Markus Burcham all involved, before Lloyd crossed for his second try, nudging the hosts ahead once more, but again Blackheath couldn’t stamp any authority on the contest.
A Johnson penalty restored the advantage in favour of the visitors, and as Blackheath conceded possession, something they did far too easily throughout, Bingham was shown enough space on the right touchline for the wing to complete his hat-trick and give his side a seven-point lead with 16 minutes remaining.
However, Fylde’s indiscipline, which has plagued them all season, and allowed Blackheath to constantly nibble away at them during this contest, returned to bite them once again. With the fresh lungs of George Edgson and Kieron Scutt into the front-row, the hosts gained an increasing ascendancy at the set-scrum, and under mounting pressure number-eight David Fairbrother became Fylde’s third yellow card victim of the afternoon.
Again Blackheath upped the tempo and strung phases together only to let themselves down with poor handling out wide, but with three minutes remaining Burcham weaved through the midfield and around the uprights to achieve parity.
Next Saturday Blackheath travel to the Butts Park Arena to take on Coventry before returning to Rectory Field on 19th December to entertain Esher.
Tries: Lloyd 2, Burcham
Conv: Whatling 2
Pens: Whatling 5
Tries: Bingham 3, Nicholls, Mills
Conv: Johnson 3
15 Hamish Graham
14 Geoff Griffiths
13 Markus Burcham
12 Richard Windsor
11 Jake Lloyd
10 Simon Whatling
9 Jack Walsh
1 Aston Croall
2 Scott Wright
3 Will Stuart
4 Gregor Gillanders
5 Devin Montgomery
6 Tom Stradwick
7 Tom Ellis
8 Anders Nilsson
16 George Edgson (Wright)
17 Kieron Scutt (Stuart)
18 Chris Sewell (Nilsson)
19 Jake Bedding (Walsh)
20 Freddie Gabbitass – not used