Hitchin hit back following slender league loss to put Cheshunt out of Tankard
PUBLISHED: 12:00 15 February 2018
Danny Loo Photography 2018
Hitchin gained revenge on Cheshunt to ensure their progress in the Herts President’s Tankard competition.
Beaten by their rivals by a single point in their London Three North West meeting a week earlier, Hitchin turned the tables at Old Hale Way.
Cheshunt had the best of the difficult conditions in the first half and the home side suffered a blow when their inspirational skipper James Bolter left the field with a serious leg injury after only 10 minutes.
The visitors took advantage to cross in the left hand corner for an unconverted try and an early 5-0 lead, but Hitchin hit back after Cheshunt had a player sent to the sin bin.
Battling against the wind, the hosts opened their account after 30 minutes as debutant scrum half Will Evans touched down, following good pressure from his forwards on the visiting line. and Hitchin enjoyed most of the possession for the rest of the half.
They could not earn any more points and turned round with the scores level, but with the wind assisting them after the restart.
A try from lock Tom Spratt in the first minute of the second half put Hitchin 10-5 ahead and they continued to keep much of the play in the Cheshunt half.
But at the end of the third quarter it was the visitors who broke away to score under the posts, with they try converted to give them a two-point lead
The stronger Hitchin pack came back after just five more minutes with a pushover try, credited to prop Stuart West, with the conversion failing. But Cheshunt got into the Hitchin 22 and were awarded a penalty, only to miss the chance to level.
With the final whistle minutes away, Hitchin were back on the attack and running the ball right to left across the Cheshunt 22 for Evans to cross for his second try
Ben Wiggins added the extras to complete an encouraging win for a young side, with an average age of 23, missing several regulars.
Hitchin entertain St Albans on Saturday in the league, looking to reverse an earlier defeat.
Scorers, tries: William Evans (2), Stuart West, Thomas Spratt. Con: Ben Wiggins.
Hitchin: Bolter, Ramsay, Akrill, Spratt, Underwood, Page, Rooney, Arbon, Evans, Wiggins, Powell, Burkett, Peachey, Rooney, Gibson. Subs: West, Shaw, Elleston, Tidey, Hoffman.