London Cornish 3 Medway 43 (London 1 South) 26th October 2019

Medway travelled to Roehampton on Saturday to take on old rivals London Cornish. On a wet, breezy day but on a pitch with a good playing surface the game kicked off. Medway were soon on the front foot. Good control of the ball pinned the home side back but Cornish defended stoutly until the 10th minute. Having been held up over the line Medway were awarded a 5 metre scrum. The forwards drove their counterparts back for No 8 Jordan Stubbington to control the ball and score. Dan Harvey converted and Medway led 0-7. After 15 minutes Cornish were awarded a penalty when Medway were adjudged offside. The home kicker made no mistake 3-7. From the restart Medway pinned the home side back again and continued to press the home line. Another scrum near their line was won by the visitors. Ross Cooley, Billy Sandison and Alex O’ Leary dominating their counterparts. James Dance and Dan Harvey had the platform to combine for Alfie Orris to power over for the first of his three tries on the day. Dan Harvey converted 3-14. On 25 minutes the impressive Max Easton stole a home line out and the steal was followed by good interplay between Antony Clement, Conor Chalmers and Sam Garofalo. Their combination allowed James Dance the space and he went over under the posts for another converted try by Harvey to put Medway in firm control 3-21. On 30 minutes Medway sealed the bonus point when a scrum was won against the head and good handling saw Max Bullock put Conor Chalmers away out wide to score an unconverted try in the corner making the score 3-26. Although Medway continued to press Cornish but they never gave up and kept their visitors at bay for the rest of the half.

The second half started with Medway introducing Christian Hechter to fray with him replacing the industrious Malcolm Cameron. Utility Mo Pangarker, who is having a good season, moved to the back row to accommodate Hechter at lock. London Cornish were looking to come back into the game. They pressed the Medway line for multiple phases but the visitor’s defence held strong. With 48 minutes on the clock good turnover ball was won from the breakdown. Dan Harvey cross kicked and found Alfie Orris in space and he beat the cover defence to score. Harvey was unsuccessful with the conversion leaving the score at 3-31. Medway were then forced to make another change when Sam Garofalo was forced from the field with an ankle injury. Noah Hyde replacing him. Medway continued to dominate the set piece thus providing the platform for their backs to attack and on 55 minutes they reaped further reward. Max Easton broke the home defensive line and more good interplay with Tom Beaumont, Max Bullock and Alfie Orris involved put Antony Clement away for the try. Harvey converted to make the score 3-38. Medway then introduced young Jack Nickalls at loose head to further his experience at this level veteran Ross Cooley making way for him. The final try of this match saw youthful winger Alfie Orris complete his hat trick. Sandison and Easton combined at the line out to provide quick ball. Good handling by the backs put Orris away and he beat his marker to score an unconverted try making the final score 3-43.

Coach Taff Gwilliam said “this was a good all round performance by the boys against an understrength Cornish side who never gave up” He added “ we hope to get a few of our own missing players back to fitness in during the week off”.