Harps performance bang on again in super Amersham win

PUBLISHED: 10:21 17 October 2019

Harpenden V Amersham & Chiltern - Bobby Tane in action for Harpenden.


Picture: Karyn Haddon

Harpenden V Amersham & Chiltern - Bobby Tane in action for Harpenden. Picture: Karyn Haddon

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The signs that Harpenden are finally finding their feet in the higher division continued as yet another excellent performance brought a second successive win - this one a 30-15 success at home to Amersham & Chiltern.

Harpenden V Amersham & Chiltern - Oli Lacey in action for Harpenden.


Picture: Karyn HaddonHarpenden V Amersham & Chiltern - Oli Lacey in action for Harpenden. Picture: Karyn Haddon

The Redbourn Lane-based rugby club were elevated to London One North last season but started the season with just one win from the opening four games.

Harpenden V Amersham & Chiltern .


Picture: Karyn HaddonHarpenden V Amersham & Chiltern . Picture: Karyn Haddon

However, they are now up to seventh and just two places below Southend Saxons who they visit on Saturday.

Harpenden V Amersham & Chiltern .


Picture: Karyn HaddonHarpenden V Amersham & Chiltern . Picture: Karyn Haddon

The turnaround in fortunes continued almost from the first minute against the Buckinghamshire side.

Harpenden V Amersham & Chiltern - Henry Simcott in action for Harpenden.


Picture: Karyn HaddonHarpenden V Amersham & Chiltern - Henry Simcott in action for Harpenden. Picture: Karyn Haddon

Tom Sweeney gave Harps the lead on five minutes with a penalty before adding a second five minutes later.

Harpenden V Amersham & Chiltern .


Picture: Karyn HaddonHarpenden V Amersham & Chiltern . Picture: Karyn Haddon

The lead was halved by Nat Hocking on 23 minutes and with both defences holding firm, the prospect of a single try seemed remote for a long time.

Harpenden V Amersham & Chiltern .


Picture: Karyn HaddonHarpenden V Amersham & Chiltern . Picture: Karyn Haddon

When the breakthrough did come, it must have arrived on a bus as Harpenden managed two scores in the last two minutes of the half.

Harpenden V Amersham & Chiltern .


Picture: Karyn HaddonHarpenden V Amersham & Chiltern . Picture: Karyn Haddon

First Matt Deane bagged a sweet try following a great break by Tom Stagg and almost immediately after Conor McClean kicked a loose ball forward before winning the race to touch down under the posts.

Harpenden V Amersham & Chiltern - Jimmy Spiers in action for Harpenden.


Picture: Karyn HaddonHarpenden V Amersham & Chiltern - Jimmy Spiers in action for Harpenden. Picture: Karyn Haddon

Sweeney converted both to give Harpenden a healthy 20-3 lead at half-time.

Harpenden V Amersham & Chiltern .


Picture: Karyn HaddonHarpenden V Amersham & Chiltern . Picture: Karyn Haddon

Amersham kept fighting though and were rewarded with a try on 55 minutes when their Kiwi prop Lachlan Collier popped up on the left wing to score.

Harpenden V Amersham & Chiltern - Jimmy Spiers in action for Harpenden.


Picture: Karyn HaddonHarpenden V Amersham & Chiltern - Jimmy Spiers in action for Harpenden. Picture: Karyn Haddon

Sweeney edged the hosts further ahead with a third penalty on 61 minutes but it took until 72 minutes for them to breach the away side's defences, thanks to a try from replacement scrum-half Henry Simcott who had come on for the injured Fred Gulliford.

Harpenden V Amersham & Chiltern - Jimmy Spiers in action for Harpenden.


Picture: Karyn HaddonHarpenden V Amersham & Chiltern - Jimmy Spiers in action for Harpenden. Picture: Karyn Haddon

Sweeney duly converted.

Harpenden V Amersham & Chiltern - Jimmy Spiers in action for Harpenden.


Picture: Karyn HaddonHarpenden V Amersham & Chiltern - Jimmy Spiers in action for Harpenden. Picture: Karyn Haddon

The one disappointment of the day was they couldn't get a fourth try and a bonus point and the final score actually went to Amersham, Lloyd Anderson getting it shortly before the final whistle.

Harpenden V Amersham & Chiltern - Tom Sweeney in action for Harpenden.


Picture: Karyn HaddonHarpenden V Amersham & Chiltern - Tom Sweeney in action for Harpenden. Picture: Karyn Haddon

Skipper Oli Lacey said: "I'm really happy with the result. Once again it was our defence that won us the game because we were under a lot of pressure.

Harpenden V Amersham & Chiltern - Adam Wheatley in action for Harpenden.


Picture: Karyn HaddonHarpenden V Amersham & Chiltern - Adam Wheatley in action for Harpenden. Picture: Karyn Haddon

"The only disappointment was letting them back into the game in the final minutes. This area of our game is something that we'll be working on ahead of the trip to Southend."

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