Congestion charge from super Saints
London Three North West Hammersmith & Fulham 5 St Albans 25 DESPITE terrible traffic problems which meant that St Albans only arrived at the ground some fifteen minutes before kick off, they continued their good form with a win over Hammersmith & Fulham t
London Three North West
Hammersmith & Fulham 5 St Albans 25
DESPITE terrible traffic problems which meant that St Albans only arrived at the ground some fifteen minutes before kick off, they continued their good form with a win over Hammersmith & Fulham to maintain second place in the league.
A morning of rain had left the pitch very wet, with standing water on the wings and both sides initially struggled to put together any phases of play. With the wind at their backs, Hammersmith & Fulham dominated the early territorial battle but their play lacked a cutting edge and they relied heavily on their big back row crashing up the middle of the park. Saints' defence was resolute and kept the opposition at bay, often overturning possession in the tackle. Gradually, St Albans found their rhythm and, as half time approached, they took the lead with a well-struck Mark Kentish penalty.
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In the second half the rain resumed, making conditions very difficult. St Albans by this time were well on top and despite the conditions played some attractive attacking rugby. Kentish extended the lead on 50 minutes with a simple penalty and the home side were lucky not to find one of their number sin-binned as the penalty count went up.
The few supporters who had made the journey had to wait until the 70th minute for the next score. Once again Hammersmith were penalised near to their line and rather than go for the three points Saints, with their pack now dominating, opted for the scrum. They duly shunted their opposition over their own line and number eight Justin Jubert touched down. Mark Kentish added the conversion.
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St Albans relaxed and failed to deal with the restart effectively, allowing Hammersmith the softest of tries to get themselves back into the game. A few choice words from the captain Green galvanised Saints and they dominated the final minutes. Dave Callan, who had a fine all-round game, bustled over for a try after a tremendous forward surge and Joe Shaw made the game safe with a typically strong running try late in the game. Mark Kentish converted one and saw his second come back off the upright.
Despite awful conditions this was a good performance by St Albans. Dave Callan and Joe Shaw performed well but the man of the match award went to Mark Kentish.
This week St Albans entertain local rivals Harpenden, preceded by a Vice Presidents lunch.