Tabard hammer Hammersmith

PUBLISHED: 11:41 19 March 2009 | UPDATED: 14:01 06 May 2010

Tabard and Hammersmith battle for the ball at a lineout during Saturday’s clash.

Tabard and Hammersmith battle for the ball at a lineout during Saturday’s clash.

London North West Three Tabard 35 Hammersmith and Fulham 12 TWO second half tries in as many minutes eclipsed a fine performance from Tabard on Saturday as they beat Hammersmith and Fulham. As league leaders Harpenden lost, Tabard now move level with them

London North West Three

Tabard 35 Hammersmith and Fulham 12

TWO second half tries in as many minutes eclipsed a fine performance from Tabard on Saturday as they beat Hammersmith and Fulham.

As league leaders Harpenden lost, Tabard now move level with them at the top of the table although Harpenden still have a much better points difference.

Last time the teams met Tabard scraped home with a last minute penalty to win by 12 points to 11. The hosts therefore knew they were in for a tough game but in the end Tabard managed to win the possession game. Hammersmith had to rely on occasional damaging forays into Tabard territory which they proved to be very good at.

Tabard opened the scoring after ten minutes with a long penalty from wing Dan Ashcroft before crossing the line for a try just two minutes later.

Ashcroft also featured in Tabard's first try just two minutes later when he made a fine run from inside his own half. Although he was stopped short, Tabard efficiently recycled the ball and a speculative kick to the corner from flanker Cam O'Connor saw full back Matt Roberts touch down for a fine try which Ashcroft converted from the touchline to put Tabard 10 points clear.

Hammersmith settled down and soon found themselves with a lineout close in. They attacked round the front and the result was a try for Flanker Dilley. The hosts quickly put the pressure back on their opponents and from a 22-metre drop out they rucked the ball efficiently and stand off Gerry Arasa powered through for a fine try which Ashcroft converted.

With 10 minutes to go Dilley pulled Hammersmith back with a well taken try after a clearance kick had been charged down with stand off Richards adding the conversion. Following this another Ashcroft penalty brought the half time score to 20 points to 12.

In the second half Tabard did not quite enjoy the possession they had in the first half but they were soon into their stride and O'Connor picked up a fine try when he thrust himself through the defence after a lineout drive.

Although Hammersmith tested the Tabard defence it held and then the two crucial tries were enough to see Tabard well clear. For the first, flanker Ashley Hall touched down after Hammersmith had made a mess of their own five-metre scrum and the second followed a searing 40-metre break by number eight Scott Stoba.

Stoba, who had a storming game throughout, unselfishly passed to scrum half Andrew Murphy just short of the line and he scored to bring up the final score of 35 points to 12.

Next week Tabard travel to Hampstead to replay the fixture after the first game went to uncontested scrums.

Tabard: Roberts, Hopcroft, Thomas, Matheson (Austerberry 43m), Ashcroft, Arasa, Murphy, Collette, Ray, Gough, Sio, Montague (Gill 64m), O'Connor, Settle (Hall 48m) and Stoba.

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