Tabard surrender late lead in loss to Woodford

A terrific try run out of their own half nearly gave Tabard the victory over Woodford on Saturday but their luck was not in and a late penalty try gave the game to their opponents, 26-22.

On a pitch that was fairly wet Woodford pitch, the game was surprisingly good with both sides using their forwards for driving and trying to play the ball tight with the occasional foray by the three-quarters to show what they could do.

Tabard opened the scoring with an early long range penalty from stand off Jack Reilly when Woodford were caught offside.

Woodford soon responded, however, with a try scored by centre Pollock, who penetrated the Tabard defence at pace and scored between the uprights, giving fullback Hyatt an easy conversion.

This score prompted a good period from Tabard. They kept the ball tight and worked play up the touchline. Awarded a penalty they opted for the line out and the ensuing drive took them close but when this faltered second row Sam Barrow picked the ball up and drove hard and low for the score to put Tabard one point clear.

Woodford replied with a forward surge of their own resulting in second row Saul claiming the touchdown.

As the half drew to a close, Tabard again had the best of the possession and another period of pressure on the Woodford line resulted in a try for flanker Tom Davies, which Reilly converted with a superb kick and the visitors turned round with a slender three point lead.

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The second half was much more closely fought with both sides playing a similar game. Woodford claimed the first score with a try from a line out drive, claimed by second row, Moody, which Hyatt converted.

Then Tabard scored the best try of the afternoon. Woodford kicked deep into Tabard territory, the ball was fielded by full back Elliot Hurrell who made the initial ground. He passed to wing Johnny Aguila who, in the mud, stepped inside the covering defence and surged forward. As he was in danger of being completely engulfed by the drift defence he fed flanker Jermaine Ijieh who went in under the posts from 20 metres out for a try which, after Reilly’s conversion, deserved to win the game.

However, Tabard’s luck was not in and a succession of perceived scrum infringements and a yellow card conspired to defeat them and the referee awarded Woodford a penalty try, converted by Hyatt and, despite a frantic last five minutes from Tabard, this gave Woodford victory.