Energetic Saints inspired by Andrews
EDF Energy Senior Vase Second Round St Albans 22 Old Ashmoleans 14 ST Albans had a score to settle when they took on unbeaten London North West Four outfit Old Ashmoleans on Saturday in the EDF Energy Senior Vase competition.
EDF Energy Senior Vase Second Round
St Albans 22 Old Ashmoleans 14
ST Albans had a score to settle when they took on unbeaten London North West Four outfit Old Ashmoleans on Saturday in the EDF Energy Senior Vase competition.
Last season the Saints were upset by their opponents at the same stage of the competition and were in no mood for a repeat.
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At sunny Boggymead Spring, the visitors started brightly and enjoyed plenty of possession and territory.
As the half progressed St Albans moved up a gear and on 20 minutes opened their account with Charlie Howard finishing off a fine move under the posts. Mark Kentish added the conversion.
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Ashmoleans struck back quickly when rather than kicking possession away, they kept the ball in hand and a succession of drives in the forwards led to a try in the corner. Their full back failed in the conversion.
Five minutes before half time Saints extended their lead when Nick Lister touched down as the St Albans forwards marched a five metre scrum over the line. Once again the reliable Kentish converted. The visitors narrowed the difference with a penalty just before half time.
In the second half the pattern of play remained the same. With a slight breeze at their backs Ashmoleans tactic of kicking ensured they enjoyed a territorial advantage but they rarely threatened to cross saints line. Saints defence was sound and as the Ashmoleans forwards became frustrated the penalty count mounted against them. From one such indiscretion Nick Lister took a quick penalty from inside the 22 metre line, he brushed off a couple of weak tackles before passing to John Andrews who took play deep into the opposing half. Andrews passed to Charlie Howard and looped round for the return pass to touch down in the corner for the try of the game.
Mid way through the half St Albans centre Martin Alderton was forced to leave the field with what looked to be a serious knee injury. With the replacement back James Dickenson having been injured in the warm up this meant number eight Justin Joubert filling in at centre.
The Ashmoleans full back kept them in the game with two well struck penalties but with eight minutes to go a Mark Kentish penalty made the game safe. John Andrews was named Man of the Match for a fine all round performance.