Blackheath v Wharfedale

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BlackheathLogo vs HodgsonAlistair AllenDickoAdam Whaites

Event Results

Blackheath – 1st Team27


Date Time Competition Season
17th Oct 15 3:00 pm National League One 2015


Rectory Field
108 Charlton Road, London SE7 7EY, UK

Blackheath – 1st Team

Position MoM DoD T C P DG


Position MoM DoD T C P DG

Gabbitass kicks Club home

As close a finish as you could ask for as Freddie Gabbitass’ fifth penalty, from 45 metres out, and with the very last kick of the game, handed Blackheath victory, and all after being seven points in deficit with a little over ten minutes remaining.

But the 17 points from the boot of the Club fly-half wasn’t the only stand-out performance at the end of this tight and sometimes fractious contest. With only 40 minutes of second XV rugby under his belt since successfully leading Kent at Twickenham in June 2014, Tom Stradwick would have been anticipating a relatively short appearance as replacement loose forward but, thrust into the fray after just four minutes following injury to James Catt, he, along with Chris Sewell, another making his season bow, led a huge defensive effort, most notably during Wharfedale’s second-half onslaught.

The Yorkshiremen deserve great credit too. They refused to let Blackheath out of their sights during a first half of which the hosts had the better and, rather than resorting to the boot of their own immaculate goal-kicking fly-half Jamie Guy, opted for territory during much of the second period. Even at the death, when an away draw would have been reasonable return for their efforts, the men in Green still looked for the win, their enterprise eventually coughing up the penalty for crossing which did for them.

Gabbitass struck the first of his penalties on ten minutes, and although Blackheath wasted a five-metre scrum opportunity soon after, a more solid set-piece in midfield saw Geoff Griffiths and Mike Mvelase combining to send Sewell across for an early 8-0 lead, soon cut to a solitary point as Chris Howick was driven over from line-out ball in response.

Two further strikes from the Club fly-half moved the hosts back in front, but again the reply was immediate as the Dalesmen caught the hosts cold from the second restart, moving the ball quickly to send hooker Ian Larkin over the goal-line, Guy converting for parity at 14-apiece at the break.

Gabbitass’ fourth penalty at the start of the second period edged Blackheath in front once more, but now it was Wharfedale, pushing the boundaries and playing the officials to better effect, in the ascendancy. A dubiously awarded penalty for holding on against Markus Burcham enabled Howick to be driven across for the open-side’s second try, Guy converting and adding a well-struck drop-goal on 67 minutes for a 24-17 lead, but aside from those blemishes the Club’s defence held and finally lifted the siege.

Now deployed at lock, Devin Montgomery having become another first half casualty, it was Stradwick who led the drive-up field and into Dale territory, and as Scott Wright released George Edgson to make the break down the left flank, the ball was moved infield to where Burcham found space to send Simon Whatling across for a converted try and equalise the tally once more.

As Blackheath now stretched the Wharfedale defence, Mvelase dived for the left corner, but was denied with unsure grounding, and Griffiths just failed to get a final pass away to Jake Lloyd on the opposite side of the field.

Fortunately, however, Gabbitass held his nerve and nudged Blackheath home.

Next Saturday Blackheath are back on the road as they travel to Loughborough Students. Kick-off on the University Campus is at 2.00 pm.


Tries: Sewell, Whatling
Conv: Gabbitass
Pens: Gabbitass 5


Tries: Howick 2, Larkin
Conv: Guy 2
DG: Guy


Blackheath Team

15 Geoff Griffiths
14 Mike Mvelase
13 Markus Burcham
12 Simon Whatling
11 Jake Lloyd
10 Freddie Gabbitass
9 Jack Walsh

1 Terry Read
2 George Edgson
3 Will Stuart
4 Gregor Gillanders
5 Devin Montgomery
6 Chris Sewell
7 Tom Ellis
8 James Catt

16 Scott Wright (Montgomery)
17 Aston Croall (Stuart)
18 Tom Stradwick (Catt)
19 Tom Trotter (Walsh)
20 Mark Briant – not used

Graham Cox