Tom Crownes debut with fine show as Vees make winning start
Herts/Middlesex One Old Abbotstonians 13 Verulamians 25 NEW players Ed John, Tom Crowne, Tom Berry and Andy Paton impressed as Verulamians recorded a winning start to the season at Old Abbotstonians on Saturday. Captain Ali Luxford was overjoyed
Old Abbotstonians 13 Verulamians 25
NEW players Ed John, Tom Crowne, Tom Berry and Andy Paton impressed as Verulamians recorded a winning start to the season at Old Abbotstonians on Saturday.
Captain Ali Luxford was overjoyed with the winning start to the league season, away to the Hayes based outfit.
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It was the new caps who stole the limelight with tries from Paton and Berry, 10 points from the boot of Crowne and a solid performance from front rower John in the tight.
Verulamians almost scored from the kick off return, with breaks from Ward and Luxford, ending with Moralee tackled short to deny the visitors the perfect start.
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OBs conceded a penalty killing the ball and Crowne stepped up to gets his first points in the Vees shirt.
The home side levelled with a penalty but Vees dominated the rest of the half. The forwards set piece strangled OBs of possession and Crowne at 10 marshalled the game.
The final pass let Vees down until the elusive try finally arrived just before the break. Crowne set up Berry who powered his way through a tackler to score. Crowne added the extras and Vees went into the break only 3-10 ahead wondering if they would regret the missed chances.
Vees put the pressure on again right from the start of the second half, playing the game deep in the OBs half.
Luxford opted for the scrum with a penalty on 10 metres and the Vees front row of John, Lowe and Stewart drove their opposition over their own line. Luxford drove past the ball and it was veteran scrum half Trevor Munien who sneaked the touch down for a 15-3 lead.
Vees continued to pile on the pressure and got the rewards again soon after. Several forward drives down the left hand touch line built up the momentum, before the ball went out to Crowne. A long pass out found full back Andy Paton on hand to step outside his man and race away to the line. Crowne added the extras and it looked like Vees were in control with 20 minutes to play at 25-3 up.
The penalty count crept up again and OBs started to run all their possession and Vees found themselves on the back foot.
OBs scored two tries to reduce the deficit to 13-25 but Vees held strong.
Man of the match went to debutant Tom Crowne for a solid all round game at 10.
Vees face Kilburn Cosmos at Cotlandswick on Saturday with a 3pm kick off.
Vees: E. John, E. Lowe, N. Stewart, J. Ward, B. Molyneux, D. Coyle, B. Moralee, A. Luxford, T. Munien, T. Crowne, J. Liddiard, T. Berry, G. Waters, S. Fordham, A. Paton, R. Suter, G. Ellis, J. Atkinson. Coach: Andy Wakeling.
Verulamians II known as 'The Squirrels' also got off to a winning start with a resounding 42-0 win over Chess Valley.
Ross Osbourne and Connor Kinnear each scored two tries and Sam Richmond, Wynne James and Darren Westhead also went over. Simon McCullough got a penalty and two conversions as the team eased to a resounding success.