Vees shine as former captain hands out a lesson
Herts/Middlesex One Verulamians 34 Old Abbotstonians 7 FORMER Verulam School Captain Chris Pugh led the way for the Vees with a powerful performance, rounded off with a hat trick of tries, to defeat Old Abbotstonians on Saturday. Vees took the field mis
Old Abbotstonians 7
FORMER Verulam School Captain Chris Pugh led the way for the Vees with a powerful performance, rounded off with a hat trick of tries, to defeat Old Abbotstonians on Saturday.
Vees took the field missing prolific scorer Ali Luxford and cornerstone of the forwards John Tromans. But with the St Columba's Holy Trinity of Ben Alway, John Liddiard and Ed Lowe back together, things looked encouraging for the Vees.
The opening exchanges showed that Old Abbotstonians had beefed up their pack since the mauling they took before the Christmas break. This, however, seemed to work in the Vees' favour as the forwards relished the struggle up front.
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With both sets of packs looking to get the upper hand and both sides' backs kicking well for position, the first 20 minutes remained even. The first score came from a deep kick into space from fly half Andy Evans, with flying winger Gareth Waters and openside Ben Moralee chasing.
The OA full back raced back to clear his lines but was charged down by Waters, with Moralee on hand to score. Evans converted. The next score came soon after when blindside Chris Pugh crashed over to make it 12-0.
Vees' forwards started to dominate the set piece and the breakdowns, giving a steady stream of possession out to the backs. The line out was a one-sided affair with the towering inside centre Brian Molyneux making the most of this with several barnstorming runs through the OA midfield. Molyneux was tackled short of the line on one of these breaks but Pugh was on hand to pick his second score for 17-0.
Abbotstonians responded and earned a converted try from a quick tap penalty, catching the Vees defence asleep.
Vees responded well and experienced full back Chris Monaghan rounded off a fine performance with a score after being put in the clear by Munien. Left winger John Liddiard showed his blistering pace as he raced 40 metres to latch onto a raking kick from Evans. With time nearly up on the clock Pugh broke away again on a 30 metre run, ignoring the support runners on both sides and running over three would-be tacklers to score a well earned hat trick and make the final result 34-7.
Vees take on Watford away in the cup on Sunday with a 2pm kick off.
Vees: P. Spyropulous, E. Lowe, N. Stewart, R. Elliot, R. Wildey, C. Pugh, B. Moralee. J. Ward, T. Munien, A. Evans, G. Waters, B. Molyneux, B. Alway, J. Liddiard, C. Monaghan.
l Vees II went down to Hemel in the Merit Table, 23-19. A closely-fought game saw Vees miss a drop-goal attempt at the end to win. Tries came from Simon McCullough, Tim Fretter and Craig Rawlings.