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.