Table toppers Tabard smash HAC
- Credit: Archant
TABARD put up 29 second half points and shut out HAC to register a commanding win and consolidate their position atop the London 2 North West Table.
A single Jack Reilly penalty was the difference at the interval but two early tries in the second half gave Tabard the impetus to surge forward, adding 14 more points to heap more misery on HAC.
The first half started fast with HAC denying Tabard any possession and testing the Tabard defence to the limit. Tabard gradually pulled themselves into the game and the first half settled down to Tabard enjoying territorial advantage and trying to break through the HAC cover and HAC looking extremely dangerous on the counter, especially at half back.
Although Tabard tried hard, the nearest they came was when centre Tryfan Edwards made a powerful surge for the line but he was pulled down just short. With the first half looking as though it was going to end scoreless Tabard were awarded a penalty on the stroke of half time. Standoff, Reilly, converted and Tabard turned round three points up.
Reilly then put Tabard six points clear with an early second half penalty but HAC were still looking capable of scoring and the game settled into one of attrition with Tabard grinding away up front and finally the breakthrough came from a scrum close in.
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Number 8, Paul Fagan, picked up at the base and powered over the line with the HAC defenders hanging on to him. Reilly converted to put Tabard 13 points ahead.
With Tabard now firmly in the driving seat Ashcroft got his first try. Tabard ran a short penalty, centre Gerry Arasa made the initial break and fed Ashcroft who sprinted clear for the try.
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With the clock running down Tabard now threw everything into getting the two tries needed for the bonus point. Running from their own line, Tabard’s wing Max Templeman made a scintillating break before being hauled down in the HAC half.
Tabard continued in this vein and from a scrum on the HAC 22 metre line, Tabard executed a miss move in the centre and Ashcroft, coming into the line, broke through and accelerated clear for his second try which Reilly converted.
Then, with time running out, Edwards repeated his move of the first half but this time he was able to outpace the despairing defence and score a great solo try. Reilly converted with the last kick of the game.