St Albans push league leaders all the way but leave with nothing

St Albans pushed league leaders London Nigerian all the way. Picture: KEVIN LINES

St Albans pushed league leaders London Nigerian all the way. Picture: KEVIN LINES - Credit: Archant

St Albans Rugby Club fell to their second defeat of 2016 but gave London North West Three league leaders London Nigerian a real fright.

Despite a brave performance, St Albans were unable to hold an early lead in a scintillating match in South West London, eventually losing 22-13.

The game was played at a fierce pace from the kick-off with St Albans weathering a 15 minute onslaught from Nigerians before they finally made it into the opposing half.

Despite losing Doug Trail to the sin bin for a controversial high tackle, they were able to claim the first points of the game through Mark Kentish’s accurate penalty.

The introduction of prop Joe Frome bolstered the pack and St Albans scrummage and a following wind allowed them to pen their hosts in their own half for long periods.

A break from the base of the scrum on Nigerians 22m by Saints scrum-half Heemi Peina and a quick feed to full-back Billy Sach whose slick hands feed debutant winger Adam Jasinski score in the corner.

Nigerians are not league leaders for nothing however and with just minutes of the half remaining they responded immediately.

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Their excellent back-row combined when fielding a loose kick, evading a clutch of would-be tackles before the ball was touched down in the corner.

The second half started with a bang as both sides fought for ascendancy.

The growing wind made it very hard for Saints to escape their half.

However, a break from centre Dan Townson and a series of thrusts from the pack saw hooker Trail crash over to take the score to 13-5.

Unfortunately St Albans could not add to their tally unlike their hosts who intelligently managed the game through use of the elements to add a further three tries of their own.

St Albans face the high flying Belsize Park next weekend at home and will take heart in their performance against a very good side.