W 26 - 5 Rep & photos attached
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Following days of uncertainty as to whether this game could actually be played, the rain held back and a sizeable line of damp,cold supporters enjoyed a superb 15 man Trojan performance to close the season against Cambridge.
Not the expected normally slow start for Trojans this time. With many players playing for the first time since the Plate Final 5 weeks ago they began the game fiercely competitive. From their kick off the Trojan forwards got straight into their opponents and forced a knock on. From the resulting scrum the backs got their first chance of the day to run with the ball. For several minutes Trojans moved the ball around within the Cambridge 22 but without looking dangerous. White took a knock and was replaced by Monk who instantly got involved with an aggressive run. Eventually Cambridge got their hands on the ball but rather than kick to touch they kicked deep. The high ball was superbly taken by fullback Mathews who ran it straight back to his pack. Repeated runs from Coleman dragged in the defenders enough for a short pass from Kemp to Ford who sidestepped his opposite number then ran around the fullback to score Trojans first. But in windy conditions he failed to nail the conversion. 5-0.
This pattern of play continued with Trojans running the ball back into the Cambridge half from the restart. Trojans, working well as a team, were quicker than Cambridge at getting numbers onto any loose ball and gave their opponents no time to run with ball in hand. Gains marvellously took two scrums against the head and with Mullane relentlessly pouncing on anything loose the home team worked back into the red zone. Then total unseen by the defence Smith picked up the ball from the edge of a ruck and powered his way over the line from 15m. Ford converted. 12-0
Cambridge made more of their restart this time and retained the ball for what remained of the first half, but Wang and Finch out wide and Montgomery in the centre kept out 4 attacks without conceding a yard as the half closed.
Now facing a stiffening breeze and with several new players on the pitch it was expected that Trojans would not be as dominant. But the replacements were quick to show they were as good as the players they replaced. With good hands from Robinson and then Brown moving the ball both left then right to wrong foot the defence and allow Setters to make 50m up the sideline before being brought down by a desperate fullback. Back in the 22 Trojans looked capable of scoring from anywhere, but it was Rowe who eventually took advantage of a missed tackle 5m out and scored Wymonham’s 3rd of the day. Converted by Ford. 19-0
Like it had done in the first have Trojan speed around the pitch gave the Cambridge team no time to build their attack and too many moves ended in either a loose pass going to ground or a knock on. Taking advantage of the mistake strong runs from Trett and Craven with good support from Montgomery, White and Ford set up Monk for a short run and a dive across the line for Trojans 4th of the day and more significantly their 100th try of the season. Converted by Ford. 26-0
The final minutes of the game belonged to Cambridge. An extremely high clearence from Trojans final assault was for once missed by Mathews, who was injured in trying to take it and judged to have knocked on. The resulting scrum was the beginning of a Cambribge assult, desperate to get something from the game. Attack after attack repelled by a determined home team defence eventually creating a gap and Cambridge got the try they deserved with the last play of the game.
The match was followed by the annual players presentations. Many thanks to Andrew Kilby & Hinghan Hog Roast for a tasty lunch.
A trip to A&E confirmed Mathews injury was a badly sprained arm and not the break that was feared.