Centurions' season is over
THE Centurions 2009 season ended in disappointment on Saturday as they suffered defeat at the hands of the West London Sharks in the RLC semi-final play-off. The Cents didn t get off to the best of starts as a mix-up between Roy Dube and Shane Rampling o
THE Centurions 2009 season ended in disappointment on Saturday as they suffered defeat at the hands of the West London Sharks in the RLC semi-final play-off.
The Cents didn't get off to the best of starts as a mix-up between Roy Dube and Shane Rampling on the opening kick-off resulted in an attacking scrum to the Sharks just 10 metres from the Cents' line.
Despite some impressive defending, and a couple of big hits from Dube and captain Paul Maloney, the Sharks had a repeat set and the pressure was too much for the Cents as their second row went over for the opening score.
From the kick off the Cents failed to keep the Sharks hemmed in and moments later the Sharks were over for their second try to give them an 8-0 lead, with both conversions being missed.
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A simple move down the line to the right saw Andy John in a one-on-one with his opposite man and the speedy winger simply stood him up and outpaced the covering defence for a 40-metre try to keep the Cents in the game at 8-4.
A headbutt from a Sharks player on Andy Lake resulted in an unnecessary brawl involving a number of players. When things settled down the referee sin-binned Lake for retaliation whilst a Sharks player was sent off.
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If anything, the sending off galvanised the Sharks and it was not long before they were on the attack and good movement saw their stand off go over to make the score 12-4.
A bad injury to centre Brett Welsh resulted in him being taken from the field and the Sharks were soon able to exploit the gaps on that side.
The Cents then effectively lost the game in the next five minutes as the Sharks ran in two converted tries to give them a 24-4 lead, which in the end, was the difference between the sides.
The introduction of David Coyle gave the Cents some renewed vigour and showed what might have been. Simple rugby down the St Albans right wing on their next possession allowed Brant Allan the opportunity to speed in for a try.
Unfortunately, a couple of high tackles after the break and more dissent by the Cents when these went unpunished put the Sharks back on the attack and the 12 men went over for a further score to extend their lead to 30-8.
The Cents frustrations grew and Johnno Elvin was sin binned for dissent, closely followed by Maloney after he made his feelings known to the referee.
A long kick from Adam Kal put the Sharks under pressure and on the next possession young Angus Simpson went over for a try from close range, which was converted by John.
Another kick from Rampling was superbly chased down by Rudi van der Merwe and Westhead and as the Sharks full back spilled the ball, Rampling was there to get the touchdown which John converted but they were unable to add to their score.
Assistant coach Graham Burggy summed up the Cents season: "Sport is always about the would have's, should have's and could have's.
"For the 2009 season, a promising team with a number of talented youngsters can only look back on what might have been with more discipline and fewer basic mistakes."
Centurions: True, John, Allan, Welsh, van de Merwe, Rampling, Kal, Dube, Simpson, Vassie, Lake, Elvin, Maloney, Roberson, Osibodu, Coyle,Westhead.