Rams Colts 10-10 Henley Hawks Colts
Henley Colts were drawn against local rivals Rams in the first round of the under 18 National Cup. It was also the first time that they had played since merging with Abbey Rugby Club.
Having not had much time together to gel as a squad, they took to the field and straight away they were on the back foot with Rams on top. However they meet a solid defence with centre Dan Kernick and flankers Michael Duda and Harrison Bell leading the way with some huge tackles.
Henley were struggling to get out of their half, but had the edge in the scrum in the first half with a massive effort from the front row of Andrew Biscoe, Brett White, and Zach Mancey. After 25 minutes the Rams managed to find a way through and scored in the corner. This score seemed to change the game and was Henley now on top, strong running from Number 8 Max Brown was putting the Rams defensive on the back foot. Fly half Mattie Morris saw gaps for his strong running centres Hugo Bullows Weeks and Kernick, to break gain line.
It was off the line out where Henley scored their first points White found Ryan Porter, to feed scrum half George Goodenough who found a gap to put Brown who stayed strong, offload to Duda who show great strengths drive himself over the line. Goodenough added the extras to give Henley the lead. Henley were straight back on the attack and were applying pressure and focusing turnovers, Rufus Shanagher was able keep Rams on their toes with sniping runs from the back of the rucks.
7-5 at half time to Henley. Rams started the second half on fire and running hard at the defensive line, making gains from each run. A try was there reward despite the last ditch Henley tackles, 10-7 to Rams. The passage of play was all played in the middle of the pitch with both teams trying to win the gain line battle. The back three, Theo Maude, Darren Objozo, Reece Winterbourne, and substitute Monty Heath were finding very little space to be able to attack. Kernick, Brown and Duda were all running hard a d making meters going forward. The tackles were flying in, Conall Moore joining in with some big tackles of his own. A penalty was awarded to Henley just inside the Rams 10 meter line which Goodenough slotted through the posts with distance to spare, 10 all with 15 minutes to go. The rest of the game was played between the Henley 22 meter and the half way. Rams did well to put the phases together, Henley kept tackling hard making sure there line was not broken. The referee blew up for the end of the game, 10 all with Rams going through on try’s scored. A great game played between two even teams.