So after a convincing win last time out .. Mothers Day Arrives with a fixture in Haringey ..
The London Teams tend to be stronger at home and we had lost a few to the aforementioned Mothers Day and some sickness
But as I have said many times before our strength is the squad and again despite all of the above we have 19 fair and true…..
Having struggled with the traffic a bit we arrived with half hour or so before ko … not really enough time for us to truly warm up but what we did do was good… we looked focused and ready
Haringey ko and we try to put a few phases together the game is taking place in between the 22 and the Halfway line and is a bit of an arm wrestle to be fair … strong tackles brick wall defence from both sides ..
With Ellen starting at outside centre and Lisa and Chloe on opposing wings possibly one of our most inexperienced back lines , we had structure but couldn’t make any head way .. but neither could Haringey .. with the scrums being uncontested ..this made the game a little faster and the number of scrums being awarded was too many really .. which also added to the stop start nature of the game …
Haringey kept getting away with not rolling away …although we had the ball it wasn’t the cleanest … and slowed us down a bit… .
From our Scrum just to the right of our posts .. Haringey had overloaded the blind side so we tried to take advantage by switching out into the open side and create an overlap .. just when it looked like we were though we knocked the ball on .. and with the ref playing an advantage Haringey recovered the ball and managed to create just enough space and score themselves .. whilst disappointing .. it was the right thing to do just didn’t execute properly and our mistake was punished .. conversion made it was 7-0 after 10 – 15 mins or so ..
The game continued in very much the same vein with wherever the ball landed from the ko there was a bit of an arm wrestle … we had a bit of pressure in their 22 and pushed them to their line only for us to turn the ball over ..for an offside I think .. Haringey managed to kick clear and put in a good chase and pinned us back in our own 22 where the arm wrestle continued..
We were penalised for an off side and whilst there seemed to be some discussion surrounding this Haringey took a quick penalty .. we were not paying any attention and paid for this with them scoring again in the corner.. … with 10 minutes left it was 12-0
Now we needed to work a bit harder as it was clear we were evenly matched but we had given a 12-0 lead which might prove difficult to overcome ..
From the re-start we were brighter run a bit harder moved the ball a bit quicker and had Haringey on their line and were knocking at the door with Fran and Daisy .. knocking hard and Flash and Freya having a go as well finally from a 2nd or 3rd phase ruck .. Flash found the room and was in in the corner ..
No more than we deserved.. but it wasn’t easy .. 12-5 … in the last few minutes we had the ascendancy and it looked for all the world we had created enough room for Ellen to get into the same corner only to be put into touch by a very high tackle …. We didn’t convert the lineout properly and Haringey managed to clear
We discussed at half time the need to covert our opportunities as they would be few as we were so evenly matched .. and today was the day we need a mental strength and desire as Haringey were not going to lie down..
The second half was almost exactly the same as the first .. we didn’t make any errors though so although Haringey had a lot of pressure they never looked like scoring .. as hard as we tried we just couldn’t create the opportunity we needed to break away just couldn’t find that something extra ..
With us turning the ball over on our 5 meter line .. with the words last play ringing in our ears .. Flash found that something that bit of space to shrug of 3 defenders and accelerate away … now as a prop she shouldn’t be expected to run the full length of the pitch .. but she did avoiding all defenders and heading under the posts .. with 5 meters to go Haringey managed to catch her but we were there in support and besieged the Haringey line for the next 2 or 3 mins .. then unfortunately whilst still in possession knocked the ball on and that was that ….
A truly brutal game played in a great spirit … a draw would have been a fair result but that is rare in Rugby …… with Hazel and Cath playing pretty well the whole game on one leg … Lisa ,Keara , Chloe and Ally .. playing longer than ever .. Annie making her debut / comeback I think the performance was pretty great .. Ellen never put a foot wrong .. Katie and Aimee are becoming a fantastic pairing and Fran , Daisy and Flash never backed out of anything and with Danni Debs and Tracey putting in the lung busting effort they always do .. it was really very good.
Finally mention for 2 others … Freya .. completing her first game in a very long time due to her knee .ended up coming off after a massive collision with 10 minutes or so left … but just great to see her running about again .. and finally Irish who once again nailed the tackle when really needed but felt she didn’t play too well .. I just wanted to say that you have been very consistent for us and don’t beat yourself up .. you have had a fantastic season so far.
The picture shows what a great respect both teams had for each other … honours even as we beat then earlier in the season ………