Harpenden lay Enfield ghost to rest with nine-try demolition

Ed Preston in action for Harpenden. Picture: KARYN HADDON

Ed Preston in action for Harpenden. Picture: KARYN HADDON - Credit: Archant

Free-scoring Harpenden went over the 50-point mark for the third successive game and in doing so laid to rest an unwanted record.

Their last victory at Enfield Ignatians came back in 2007 but an emphatic 61-7 ensured that statistic was wiped from the record book.

The nine-try success also keeps their promotion bid from London Two North West firmly on track ahead of their crucial meeting at home to Chiswick on Saturday.

They are second in the table but with league leaders Belsize Park having a free weekend, they have closed the gap to just one point, although having played one game more.

Chiswick have also played one game less and remain seven points behind in third.

Skipper Oli Lacey said: “Enfield is always a tough place to come and it’s been a banana skin for us in recent years so I am really happy with the win.

“It’s testament to our effort and all the training we’ve been putting in.”

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Using the slope and the strong wind to the maximum advantage, Harps went ahead as early as the fourth minute with a try from Tom Sweeney and he converted seven minutes later after George Rolfe had scrambled over.

They did lose Jeremy Walmsley to a suspected broken wrist on 21 minutes but they didn’t let that affect them as they continued to dominate both territory and possession.

A third try followed from Tagen Strydom and Will Hales secured the bonus point shortly before the break following some excellent work by number eight Michael Goode, whose powerful runs constantly had the Londoners under pressure.

Sweeney converted both.

Ed Preston marked his return from a working holiday in Australia with a converted try on 47 minutes before Strydom got his second on the hour mark following a scorching run by Nick Childs.

Ollie Mann added the extra points this time and he would add further points for each of the next three tries.

Jack Murphy had got the first of them under the posts before Mann, who put in another outstanding display, got in on the act himself.

Hales got his second with three minutes to go and although Enfield got one of their own at the death through Dom Nott, it was of scant consolation.