Date: Sun 12th Jan 2020
Sunday 15th December – Eton Manor u14s 15 Harlow u14s 31: Waterfall Cup
Today we travelled to Eton Manor to play on their all-weather pitch. The players have previously been uncomfortable on these pitches but today, and having lost 50-5 this time last year, they buried that ghost.
The first half kicked off with Harlow going on the attack very quickly with a desire to right the lack of effort displayed against Westcliff last week.
Harlow’s first try came from a line break by Ben Ferrier, as he entered the Eton Manor 22, he as half tackled but not held and was back to his feet in a flash to race the rest of the way to the try line and score under the posts. Joseph Pankhurst stepped up to take the conversion which was partly charged down but still crept over the posts.
Eton Manor had a number of excellent athletic players and were able to exert their own pressure and dominance on Harlow. Through this pressure they were able to kick for the corner hitting the 5 meter line very accurately then a well executed a catch and drive took them over.
Eton Manor then scored a brace quickly from line breaks scoring unconverted tires out wide.
Half time 15 – 7.
At half time, the players talked about protecting the ball at the break down and committing two people to the break down to retain the ball. An increase in work rate and the pressure we could put on Eton Manor would bear fruit.
Harlow were quick to attack. From a line out Harlow unusually drove forward sucking in Eton Manor defenders. The ball was spun out to Ben Ferrier now playing in the centre who bust through the back line to score close to the points. Tobie Westbrook was close with the conversion hitting the post and agonisingly bouncing back. 15-12
Scrum half Jack Rushworth was injecting some tempo into our attack and from two penalties awarded in quick succession, he tapped and went looking for the big guys to bash some holes. Ed Lea and Joseph Williams were happy to take on the challenge. From a quick ruck the ball was moved to centre Tolu Ajibabi who broke away score close to the posts. Joseph Pankhurst, aware of the pressure applied to his early conversion took it back a little further and calmly slotted the conversion. 15-19
From an Eton Manor scrum Harlow out powered them to win the ball. Number 8 Danny Billington picking up and powering towards the line his team mates added extra power to make sure he crossed the line. 15-24
In the closing stages a scrum near the half way line offered Harlow the opportunity to kick the ball dead and win the game, but the attacking instinct kicked in, knowing we now couldn’t lose the backs ran a move to put Ben Ferrier into a little space and he raced to the line score close to the posts. Joseph Pankhurst converted to take the final score to 15-31 in Harlow’s favour.
Harlow raised their game today which made all those watching very proud. Particular with Eton Manor playing in the division above we have shown that with great effort we can be a match for any team.
Final Score 15 – 31.
In training this week, we need to work on our scrummaging and our break down to prepare to take on Maldon next week.
Special mentions: Callum Boyce, great work rate throughout. Front row of Joseph Williams, Charlie Jacques and Max Bien for timely winning the scrum against the head.
Harlow Man of the Match: Ben Ferrier, an excellent game regardless of which position he played.
Tries: Ben Ferrier (3), Tolu Ajibabi, Danny Billington
Conversions: Joseph Pankhurst (3)
Referee: From Eton Manor
1. Max Bien (Sub Charlie Jacques), 2. Callum Boyce, 3. Joseph Williams, 4. Brandon Jackson (Sub Corey Kelman), 5. Ed Lea, 6. Jamie Oliver, 7. Danny Billington, 8. Ben Ferrier, 9. Jack Rushworth, 10. Joseph Pankhurst, 11. Henry Stovell, 12. Tolu Ajibabi, 13. Owen Eynon (Sub Callum Hewett), 14. George Snowdon, 15. Tobie Westbrook,
All players played half a game or more.