Old Albanian cemented their place in the top half of National Two South with a 12-3 win at Canterbury in a match conspicuous by both teams' reluctance to use the conditions.

The obvious advantage was to use the wind and the slope but the hosts will have been more disappointed in not even attempting to pin the visitors in their own 22 in the second half than the visitors were about the same tactical howler in the opening period.

OAs though will be more than satisfied with this performance, carrying the ball forcefully and then defending ferociously when Canterbury had hold of it.

Tom Best opened the scoring for the home side with a penalty on 14 minutes but skipper Chris West charged over beside the posts twelve minutes later after a smart positional kick to give Albanian the lead, Greg Lound stretching that further with the conversion.

The deciding action came on 54 minutes. Play had been bogged down in midfield when the visitors won a scrum against the head.

Elliott McPhun made a dart down the blind side with Jevaughn Warren in support and once the loose-head prop had the ball he simply fed the rapid Alex Noot to grab the clinching score.

The second-team Romans enjoyed a big win over their counterparts from neighbouring Harpenden, winning 43-6.

They scored seven tries in total with Ben Davies converting four of them. Man of the match Aaron Bello got one, as did Phil Brunt, Cian Morris, Harry Knighton, John Greener, Lewis Head and captain Euan McGonagle.

Most were made possible by the dominance in the line-out from Ben Collis and Tommy Daley.

The win made it eight wins from eight and leaves them six points clear at the top of Herts Middlesex Merit One.

They travel to Bishop’s Stortford on Saturday.

Harpenden's first team also lost as their hopes of promotion from London One North took a hit.

The 29-17 reverse at home to second-placed Shelford drops them below Colchester into fifth.

St Albans though kept their hopes alive in a fascinating title race in London Three North West.

The top six team are separated by just eight points with sixth-placed Hitchin having played one less game than their five rivals.

Saints won 20-13 at home to Royston to move up to third, five points behind leading pair Finchley and Hendon.

Tabard were without a game this week and restart after the Christmas break on Saturday at home to the leaders.

Verulamians are also back at the weekend with their opening game of 2022 in Herts Middlesex One away to Bank of England.