Big guns..... 21 strong, salute a tremendous season.
By Alan Erskine
Skipper Lee Roberts, lead the way for the final time this season. Hoping for destruction of the team that robbed us of 4 points earlier in the season.
A fine array of supporters donned the touchline after another entertaining VP lunch, and we were ready for action.
Kick off was met by a resounding and pitch perfect version of Jerusalem. What a way to start the seasons swan song.
‘Bridge pressed heavily in the opening gambit, only to be refused points by a stubborn defence and a referee who was hot around the breakdown.
First blood however did fall to the home team. The domineering presence of tough man Spike Smith was too powerful for the Sheppey defence. Boshing off no less than 10 tackles (please allow for artistic license), found himself under the posts. Lee Roberts conversion, 7-0.
Next play was for the islanders. Good lines and forceful forward play marched them up to the halfway line. Unfortunately for them, Rob ‘the try machine’ Mitchell (24th of the season) was on hand for an interception, ran in from about 40 yards for a Score in the corner. A tremendous kick from our chubby 10 made it 14-0.
As we have become accustomed, Sam Tan gathered the ball from a dead situation, only to carve the opposition in two. A great piece of individual brilliance. Conversion #3 to the good. According Dominic Mitchell, this should have been 22-0. Later to admit to having fat thumbs and sausage fingers. 21-0.
Slightly against the grain, the Sheppy came back. A try of real team spirit that jolted some of my ideas to introduce the bench. 21-7.
Touchline scorer, Dom Mitchell, at this point realised that he had the bladder of a 3 year old. 4th try missed by the alcoholic hooker (maybe it’s s trend). Luckily I was there to witness it as it was a belter. Great pack build up, hands through all of the backs, great offload from the welsh pocket rocket (Callum Jones). Try Dan Rowland. Conversion missed from very wide. 26-7 and half time.
The break was enjoyed by the fun loving crowd. Beer and wine a plenty as we anticipated an exciting 2nd half.
Early in the second period brought a try, finished from distance by winger Nick Tingley. 31-7. This brought enough daylight for us to ring the changes. Ben Weston, Jack Miller, Rory Kay, Kevin Parker, Henry Porter and James Hart coming off the bench to add some fresh legs. Henry Porter especially adding some speed and strength to an already awesome team.
More forward strength brought a rather tame penalty try before Sheppey had 2 more scores of their own. I would go into more detail, but by this point, I was suffering the effects of too much alcohol. Sorry. 38-19.
Whilst having another moan about his gregory peck (neck for those unused to the London vernacular), Ben Weston was subbed off and yellow carded simultaneously. High tackle I believe. I suppose a sore neck is just karma.
A fine performance was polished off with a birthday brace for Nick Tingley. Stirling effort for the massively improved winger.
An amusing moment aroused as their big 8 refused to go on the pitch whilst Spike was on it. I duly replaced the powerhouse and the Sheppey chap still refused to go on the pitch. How odd.
Still, a big hand to our worthy competitors, good performance and I hope you get back home before curfew.
All that’s left to say is that I’m an extremely proud clubman and congratulations on rejuvenating our fantastic club.
Man of the match. An easy choice this week. Umpa Lumpa impersonator, Callum Jones absolutely shone from 15. A real stand out performance.
Dick of the day. (Maybe a tad harsh) but, being sat down (big time) for the first time in his playing career, Craig Decoteau. You did play well though.
So onto the club dinner on the 27th April. I’m sure it’ll be great fun, so please book a seat.
Div 3 beware! We’re coming next year. If you’re not intimidated by the rugby, these shocking match reports are sure to make you wince. Bbbbbrrrrraaaaaahhhhh!!!