Gallery: Academy duo show off Harpenden’s depth of talent

Harpenden put in big defence

Harpenden put in big defence - Credit: Archant

Harpenden showed off their depth of talent in Saturday’s 25-7 victory over Old Merchant Taylors at Redbourn Lane.

Despite a slender eight-point lead, Matt Davies brought on academy players Curtis Reynolds and Chris Cullen to see out the London 2NW tie. The fact that Harpenden are fighting at the top of the table speaks volumes of the club’s faith in its up-coming players to throw them on in a game where second place was at stake.

The duo answered any questions, though. Cullen was cut down by OMT’s impressive inside centre, Joe Cokanisaga, when he looked certain to score but there was nothing he could do to prevent Reynolds crossing the whitewash.

The performance of the youngsters capped a pleasing day for Davies that started in impressive fashion as Aaron Wilde kicked a penalty and then added five points.

Harpenden’s second try was a thing of beauty. Scrum-half Adam Wilkinson flicked the ball out to Adam Sterling who embarked on a 40-metre dash. Quick hands saw the ball passed from him to Tom Muskett, via Wilkinson, and he went over. Wilde added the extras.

Cokanisaga, 17, went over and Gov Kandola kicked the conversion to narrow the gap. Wilde responded with three points soon after and it remained 18-7 until the final 10 minutes of the game as luck deprived Harpenden of the tries their dazzling moves deserved.

Then came the youngsters and Reynolds scored Harpenden’s third try, which was converted by Wilde, to cap a superb day for Davies and his management team.