Tabard enjoy life of Reilly against Town
- Credit: Picture: DANNY LOO
Tabard produced a solid effort to clinch a narrow 16-14 win over Stevenage Town and leap over their north Herts opponents in the table.
The Radlett-based rugby club are now fourth in London Three North West, level on points with Town who are one place further back, and just four points behind Old Streetonians in the final promotion place.
The fact they had several front-line players absent from the clash at Cobden Hill made this a worthy win against their tough and physical visitors.
Tabard played a very controlled game, building the phases and complementing it with another tremendous defensive effort.
But as it so often is, it was the boot of Jack Reilly that proved critical throughout the contest and it was his penalty with just minutes to spare that was ultimately the difference.
He got the scoring underway after 24 minutes with a penalty and almost immediately after that, they bagged their first try when Reilly sent a perfect cross-field kick to Jonny Aguilla, who caught it on the full and swerved past his opposite number to score.
The conversion took the score to 10-0 after 28 minutes which is how it remained until the second half.
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Tabard were again the team to score next, Reilly adding another three points after a high tackle by Stevenage 10 minutes after the restart.
A yellow card to Jamie Hancock gave Stevenage a way back into the game, and it was one they took full advantage of with two converted tries giving them the lead.
The first saw Vinnie Kevans go over the corner and Gareth Lewis land a superb conversion from out wide and before Hancock was able to return, scrum half Andrew Malins touched down as a five-metre scrum was pushed over the line.
Lewis’s kick gave Stevenage the lead for the first time with just nine minutes to go.
But with Tabard back to full strength, they were able to win another penalty, yet again for a high tackle.
And the ever-reliable Reilly sent the ball over the bar to hand them the win.
Two games remain before the league takes time off for Christmas and they see Tabard face the two sides in the relegation places.
First up is a trip to Finchley on Saturday before they host Verulamians on December 15.