Category: 1XV Match Report

Bedford Queens v Stockwood Park

Stockwood Park RFC will not recall with affection their first league game on a Rugby Football Union 4G artificial pitch. Saturday’s opponents, Bedford Queens RFC, who share their playing facility with Bedford Athletic RFC, had use of the 4G pitch for their home league fixture with Park. Unfortunately, Park were defeated in the match and came away with two serious injuries for their troubles. Flanker Michael Powell with ankle ligament damage and Centre Jason Mitchell with a damaged Hamstring.

Park started well. Brandon Lewsey playing Fly Half in the absence of the unavailable James Hankey, kept Park on the attack with some accurate kicking to keep the Queens defence under pressure but on a break out from their own half Queens kicked a penalty and soon followed up with a converted try from a powerful rolling maul which gave them a 10-0 lead. As halftime approached Queens scored another try before Park bounced back and Brandon Lewsey scored a good try to make the score 15 – 5 to Queens at the break.

Any hope for a recovery in the second half faded as Queens extended their lead to 23 – 5 with a try and penalty before Brandon Lewsey, Park’s man of the match, again drove himself over for a try, converted by Matt Jones to take the score to 23 – 12 to Queens.  Queens added a further penalty to complete a 26-12 victory.

This Saturday Park return to Cup action when they entertain Shipston on Stour in the 2nd round of the RFU National Vase.

Park’s 2nd xv continued their strong start to the season with a close 12-11 league victory over Ampthill.

YO HO HO HO HO!

Birstall RFC, on their first ever visit to Stockwood Park, must have thought that Christmas had come early as Park, having dominated possession in the second half, mainly through their excellent lineout where lock Jack Wharton was impressive and drawn level at 15 – 15, then managed to squander four clear try scoring chances to take victory and a possible extra bonus point.

For Park the game started as last week with their scrummage under early pressure and Birstall soon moved into a 3-0 lead with a penalty. However, against the run of the play Park then took the lead themselves when Centre Jason Mitchell forced his way over the line for a try following forward pressure. The visitors bounced straight back to score a try of their own to give them an 8-5 lead at half time.

In the second half Park started to build the pressure as a constant supply of ball gave them opportunities to attack. Unfortunately, a missed opportunity on one side of the pitch saw Birstall increase their lead with an interception try which they converted to lead 15-5. Park now dominated the last 30 minutes as first No 8 Michael Powell drove over for a try and then left-wing James Young followed up with another. Neither try was converted.  Park continued to attack and both loose head prop Justin Harkin and scrum half Frank Daly were stopped just short. Park finished on the attack but could not secure the victory. A case of what might have been.

Next week Park travel to Bedford Queens for their next league match.

Park’s 2nd xv defeated Bedford Swifts by 38-10.  Tries were scored by Bennett. Anderson (2). Standring. Peacock and Brady. Jones kicked four conversions.

Cup Win For The Park In Local Derby

Stockwood Park and Dunstablians used the first available non-league Saturday of the season to play their first-round tie of this season’s Bedfordshire Cup.

After a close, competitive but error ridden game, primarily due to the arrival of rain, Park emerged as 17-11 winners from this local derby in which Dunstablians established scrum dominance, particularly in the first half but Park controlled the lineout and gradually took control of the game through the second half. Park were well served by their powerful number 8 Ben Griffin and by man of the match, scrum half Frank Daly, who was at the heart of Park’s excellent defence.

In this rain affected match Dunstablians scrummage platform and pressure soon secured a 3-0 lead but with Park withstanding further pressure their centre Brandon Lewsey intercepted a loose pass close to his own 22 metre line and ran the length of the pitch to score a try giving Park a 5-3 lead which they held until halftime.

In the second half Park came more and more into the game and with 20 minutes to go increased their lead to 12-3 after some good forward pressure saw Brandon Lewsey drive over for his second try which he also converted. Dunstablians added a further penalty to take the score to 12-6 before Park secured the crucial score when a sharp pass from Fly half, James Hankey, prominent throughout, put replacement left wing James Pedder over for a try wide out.

With a few minutes to go Dunstablians pulled a try back following a fine run by their right wing to set up a tense and exciting end to this Cup Match with Park finally securing a 17-11 victory.

This Saturday Park revert to league action when they play Birstall RFC at home.

So Close!

Stockwood Park’s second league match of the season was a tremendous game of exciting rugby played with total commitment on both sides and well refereed.  Casuals, who finished one point off promotion last season finally took the honours on their own ground by 22-21, but not before Park, led from the front by Skipper and Hooker Tom Childs, had competed with great spirit and skill to nearly secure the victory themselves.

Casuals started with intent and were soon 7-0 up slicing through Park’s defence after collecting a loose ball in midfield and then adding to this with a penalty to take the score to 10-0 after 30 minutes. With both sides seeking to attack Park were soon on the scoreboard themselves when, following forward pressure, Centre Brandon Lewsey scored a try which he also converted, and which was soon followed by another try, this time from left wing Kyran Ryan who outpaced the home defence to score near the posts. Lewsey added the extras to give Park a 14-10 lead at halftime.

Unfortunately, a yellow card for a “professional” foul robbed Park of Brandon Lewsey for ten minutes at the start of the second half, with Casuals taking advantage to score again and take the lead at 15-14.  Park continued to attack and their quality lineout possession, where locks Phil Doherty, Jack Wharton and back row Michael Powell and Will Varnals excelled was crucial. From such a lineout on the Casuals 22 metre line Park produced a powerful drive which was stopped illegally on the home team’s try line and which resulted in a penalty try to give Park a 21-15 lead.

With eight minutes to go pressure from Casuals resulted in their winning converted try to leave them as 22-21 victors. Park took much credit for their performance including a losing bonus point.

Park’s 2nd xv made it three wins out of three with a 34-22 victory over Albanians 3rd xv and Park’s 3rd xv defeated a Hitchin xv by 27-7.

Bonus Point Win Start For The Park!

Stockwood Park started their new league season with a slow burn first half and although they went into an early 7-0 lead with a try scored by Flanker Michael Powell and converted by Centre Brandon Lewsey, their occasionally frail defence and number of penalties conceded left them 10-7 down at halftime to a hardworking Biggleswade team.

The second half however was completely different as Park burst into life scoring a further four tries to secure a bonus point 33-17 victory and give their league campaign a very positive kick start. The first try after the break was scored by right wing Kyran Ryan who outpaced the visitors defence to touchdown for Lewsey to convert and take Park into a 14-10 lead. Almost immediately Biggleswade responded with a converted try of their own to retake the lead at 14-17.  Park’s left wing, Aaron Colbert, then scored a well worked try which Lewsey converted before number 8 Ben Griffin powered over and with Lewsey converting Park moved into 28-17 lead. Park were now in control and completed their victory when debutant Full Back James Young finished a team move to secure the 33-17 victory.

Coach Tom Edmunds was delighted with the result, accepting that there is still plenty to work on in training but pleased that there is increasing competition for places in an improving squad.

This Saturday Park continue their league programme with a visit to Northampton Casuals RFC.

Park’s 2nd XV also had a good win over Northampton Casuals by 26-0.  Tries were scored by Sheppard Zulu. Daniel Corsie. Matt Hereward and Alfie Daly. Fly Half Matt Jones kicked three conversions

Finchley Triple Header Results

Stockwood Park completed their pre-season warm up games, ahead of their first league fixture against Biggleswade, with a triple header against Finchley RFC at their London Road ground last Saturday.  On a warm afternoon and on pitches in good condition, despite the dry weather, Park finished all square with Finchley, losing the 1st xv fixture 19-34, winning the second team game 15-7 and with the U17’s having a 33-33 draw.

At 1st xv level Park took the opportunity to look at more new recruits and players returning from long term injuries. Ben Griffin was outstanding and a constant threat to the visitors’ defence and his return to 1st xv duty will be welcomed. Park’s handling errors and sloppy defence, particularly wide out gave a well organised Finchley team the opportunity to turn defence into attack and put Park under unnecessary pressure.  Park’s few problems from this game are all issues that can be put right on the training field.

For Park, No 8 Ben Griffin scored their first try converted by Fly Half Brandon Lewsey. Lewsey scored and converted the second try with left wing Aron Colbert scoring the third try. For the second XV tries were scored by Sheppard Zulu and Leandro. Fly Half Matt Jones kicked a penalty.

This Saturday Park open their league campaign with a home fixture against Biggleswade RFC KO 3pm.

Stockwood Park 1XV 36 Bedford Queens 1XV 23

Stockwood Park completed their league season with a victory over Bedford Queens by 36-23 in an entertaining game played under floodlights and in front of a good crowd.  It was only in the last 10 minutes that Park drew clear to secure a deserved win in which they scored five excellent tries. Bedford Queens played their full part in the entertainment and kept the pressure on Park until near the end.

Park were on the attack from the start and before Queens could touch the ball had scored their first try through their excellent loose head Prop Justin Harkin, once again in support of a flowing team move. Centre Brandon Lewsey added the extras.  Queens soon responded with their own converted try and two penalties to move into a 13-7 lead.  Park were soon back on the attack and the next score came from No 8 Ben Griffin, a problem for the Queens defence throughout, who barged over for a try which Lewsey converted.  Lewsey then added a Penalty before Ben Griffin added his second try for Lewsey to convert and give Park a 24 -16 halftime lead.

The second half saw both sides attacking at all opportunities and it was Queens who set up an exciting finish as they scored a converted try to take the match score to 24-23 to Park.   With 5 minutes left a powerful forward drive saw Hooker Tom Childs driven over to make it 29-23 before Brandon Lewsey, who had an excellent game in the Centre latched onto a well-placed kick from Fly Half James Hankey to score under the posts. Lewsey, who scored 14 points in the game, injured himself in the act of scoring the final try and the extras were added by scrum half Alex Lovell.

After a mixed bag of a League season, Park have now completed their last two league fixtures with excellent victories which will give renewed optimism for the future. Their Skipper for the last 5 years, Jamie Hoque, is now standing down. Hoque has been an inspirational figure and although beset by numerous personal injuries which have limited his playing appearances, he has never wavered in his commitment to the 1st xv and the Club, and can look back with pride on his time as Captain.

John Humphreys

Stockwood Park 1XV 43 Daventry 1XV 10

This was not only a very impressive team performance and a conclusive victory for Stockwood Park on their last home league Saturday fixture of the season, but it was also a performance which gave huge encouragement for next season. Individually there was a star first half display from ex Colt left wing Kyran Ryan who scored 3 fine tries before halftime. There was also the sight of Park’s long term injured backrow forwards of No 8 Ben Griffin, former skipper and No 6, Michael Powell, and current skipper and No 7 Jamie Hoque playing together as a unit for only the first time this season and how influential they were on this result.  Also, there was a welcome return to form and fitness of Scrum Half Alex Lovell who came on at halftime and who adds strength to the Park Squad.

Park started in a hurry and were soon 10-0 up from the first two of Kyran Ryan’s tries, both showing the winger’s pace when he obtained space.  Daventry then came back into the game, scoring two tries with their heavy forwards causing some pressure on Park’s pack.  Park then took a useful lead before halftime when Ryan latched onto an interception to score his and the team’s third try. Brandon Lewsey added the extras to give Park a 17-10 lead at halftime.

The first 20 minutes of the second half Park were in full command scoring three further tries through Skipper Jamie Hoque, outstanding throughout, Centre Brandon Lewsey, maintaining his excellent try scoring rate and Hooker Tom Childs. Lewsey added the extras for two of the tries to take Park’s lead to 36-10. Park’s final try was scored by Jack Brooks and converted by Lewsey to give an excellent 43-10 victory.

Park complete their League season with a rearranged home game on Thursday evening against Bedford Queens. 7.30 KO under floodlights.

John Humphreys

Biggleswade 36 Stockwood Park 14

Although Spring was in the air on a warm and sunny afternoon at Biggleswade, there was no spring in Stockwood Park’s step as they were given a comprehensive lesson in taking your scoring chances by the home team. Park were lack lustre and muddled in their decision making, consistently being turned over as promising moves began to take shape. Any gains in territory that were made were usually countered by some accurate and quality tactical kicking by the Biggleswade Fly Half.

Park were soon behind when the home team opened the scoring with a converted try before centre Brandon Lewsey, a constant threat, latched onto an interception and sprinted 40 metres to score. Lewsey converted his own try. Biggleswade quickly responded with a further converted try and took the score to 24-7 with another converted try and penalty after half an hour. Just before halftime Park gave themselves a chance of recovery with a well worked try scored by acting Captain and Hooker Tom Childs. Lewsey added the extras.  24-14 to the home team at halftime.

In the second half Biggleswade went further ahead with two more tries and one conversion from their fly half who only missed one kick at goal throughout the game.  The final score was a disappointing 36-14 to Biggleswade who were deserving winners.  Park now have two home league games to finish their season. Daventry this Saturday KO 3pm and the rearranged fixture with Bedford Queens under floodlights on Thursday April 26th  KO 7.30pm.

John Humphreys

Vipers 29 – Stockwood Park 14

This was an entertaining league fixture in which Stockwood Park played their full part against a well organised Vipers team who are strong contenders for promotion this season. Parks forwards won good ball in the lineout through locks Tom Edmunds and Jack Wharton and the team moved the ball with skill on a number of occasions with Fly Half James Hankey and Centre Brandon Lewsey prominent.

However, Park’s error count was too high and a number of promising moves were ended with mistakes and their defence let them down at critical moments, particularly as they tired late in the second half.

Vipers took a 5-0 lead before steady pressure from Park saw centre Brandon Lewsey score a try close in and then add the extras to give Park a 7-5 lead.  Vipers bounced back with another try to give them a 10-7 lead at halftime and with Park well in contention.

However, Vipers took more control in the second half increasing their lead with two further tries before Park’s forward pressure was rewarded with lock Tom Edmunds charging over wide out and replacement Matt Jones adding the extras with a fine kick.  Vipers added a late try to give them a 29 – 14 victory.

Next Saturday Park are away at Biggleswade RFC KO 3pm.