Tabard hold on for opening day victory over Nigerian
London Two North West Tabard 25 London Nigerian 18 TABARD scored two excellent tries to put themselves in a strong position against London Nigerian on Saturday but they then faltered and allowed Nigerian back into the game, before finally clinching vict
London Two North West
Tabard 25 London Nigerian 18
TABARD scored two excellent tries to put themselves in a strong position against London Nigerian on Saturday but they then faltered and allowed Nigerian back into the game, before finally clinching victory.
Tabard were quickly put on the defensive by some positive Nigerian attacking but they kept their opponents out and in virtually their first foray into Nigerian territory they scored a great try.
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From a lineout, following a penalty kick, full back Gerry Arasa came into the three-quarter line and burst through only to be stopped by a desperate tackle a metre out.
Fortunately omnipresent flanker Ben Matheson was on hand to gather the loose ball and score under the posts giving stand-off Jack Reilly an easy conversion.
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Tabard's second try was just as exciting. From a scrum in their own half number-eight, Scott Stoba picked up at the base and made a massive break up-field before passing to wing Neil Hopcroft, who went over for the try with Reilly again adding the conversion.
Nigerian, virtually against the run of play, then scored their first try when scrum half Odediran dummied his way through the cover defence and wing Omenai converted.
Tabard restored their advantage when second row, Sam Barrow went over after another fine break from Stoba following a 22-metre drop out.
Unfortunately, as the half drew to a close, Nigerian kicked a penalty goal and wing Shelleng went over for an unconverted try which meant that the sides turned round with Tabard just ahead by 19 points to 15.
The second half was a much dourer affair with both sides defending stoutly and giving nothing away.
Nigerian were the first to score, midway through the half, with a penalty from Omenai to bring them within a point.
This led to some frantic defence by Tabard but once again they kept their composure and two penalty kicks from Reilly saw Tabard home.
Tabard: Arasa, K Murphy, Cunningham, Thomas (Roberts 32), Hopcroft, Reilly, Murphy, Lake (Will), Lake (Wilf), Gough, Barrow, O'Connor, Hall, Matheson, Stoba.