Clinical Tabard get back on track

PUBLISHED: 10:25 19 February 2009 | UPDATED: 13:57 06 May 2010

London Three North West Tabard 26 Imperial Medicals 17 TABARD ran in four tries as they got their title assault back on track with a win over Imperial Medicals. The fact that the game took part was a credit to the groundsman but with the weather and groun

London Three North West

Tabard 26 Imperial Medicals 17

TABARD ran in four tries as they got their title assault back on track with a win over Imperial Medicals.

The fact that the game took part was a credit to the groundsman but with the weather and ground perfect for flowing rugby the crowd was treated to plenty of points and some extraordinary rugby at times.

From the start Tabard produced a series of combination moves which took them deep into the Medics half. This pressure produced a penalty as the Medics defended desperately but Tabard were unable to convert this early chance into points.

The Medics fought back and Tabard were forced into their own half but Jack Reilly produced a superb dummy and sprinted through the Medics line. When the full back closed him down his pass to Gerry Arasa was perfectly timed and Arasa sprinted in from 20 metres. Unfortunately Reilly was injured in this move and took no further part in the game. Andy Murphy converted the score to give Tabard an early seven-point lead.

Murphy was to star shortly afterwards as the Medics fumbled on Tabard's 22-metre line. He snatched up the ball and sprinted away but was caught just metres from the line. Tabard's support arrived in strength and the ball was quickly recycled. Michael Thomas broke through the first line of the Medics defence and Neil Hopcroft was on hand to score Tabard's second try. Murphy again converted and Tabard were leading by fourteen points after just 20 minutes play.

The rest of the half saw the Medics produce some excellent rugby and Tabard were forced into their own half for long periods. It was only sterling defence which saw Tabard stop the Medics from scoring and retain their lead to the half time whistle.

Tabard lost their shape early in the second half when centre Arasa was injured and the Medics capitalised on this to score their first try, which they converted, to reduce Tabard's lead.

Tabard returned to the attack with some strong forward runs to take them to the Medics 22. Scrum half Murphy took the ball from a retreating Tabard scrum, evaded the Medics back row and then jinked through the centre of the Medics defence to produce a brilliant individual score under the posts which he converted to restore Tabard's 14-point lead.

The Medics were still not finished and responded with another unconverted try when Tabard had a clearance kick charged down.

Tabard's forwards then came into their own and a series of crashing charges carried them deep into the Medics half.

Finally a great run from Josh Sio saw him shrug off a number of tacklers before slipping a pass to Matt Roberts who sprinted in for a try.

From the kick off Tabard again drove to within feet of the Medics line but a penalty saw them frustrated as they hoped to increase their lead. The Medics bravely ran from this position and were rewarded with a try of their own just on the final whistle.

Next week Tabard First XV are playing at London Nigerians in the League and kick off is at 2.30 pm.

Tabard: Hopcroft , Austerberry, Thomas, Arasa (Cooper 45m) , Roberts, Reilly (Montague 6 m), Murphy, Collette, Baker, Gough , Sio, O'Connor, Settle, Matheson and Stoba.

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