Sides prepare for derby on Datchworth Green
PUBLISHED: 12:08 21 September 2006 | UPDATED: 10:54 06 May 2010
League points are at stake as Stevenage Town visit The Green at Datchworth for a local derby this Saturday. Depleted Stevenage Town lost their opening home London Three North West league match to a strong Enfield Ignatians side 13-0. The scoreline accura
League points are at stake as Stevenage Town visit The Green at Datchworth for a local derby this Saturday.
Depleted Stevenage Town lost their opening home London Three North West league match to a strong Enfield Ignatians side 13-0.
The scoreline accurately reflected the game as Town found it difficult to break Enfield's organised defence.
Stags started well and were within kicking range of the posts due to penalties Enfield were incurring. But instead they decided to kick into the corners and the moves broke down.
With 15 minutes gone, Enfield took the lead with their first real deep attack into Stevenage's half with a well-struck penalty 25m out. Enfield's lead could easily been 9-0 by the break as their impressive fly-half missed two other simple chances.
Stags exacerbated their problems within a few minutes of the start of the new half with the withdrawal from the game of influential number eight Gareth Roberts due to an ankle injury and scrum-half Danny Golds.
Enfield ran in two unconverted tries as Stags found it difficult to plug the gaps in a rapidly reorganised side.
The never-say-die attitude of the Stags re-emerged though as good back interplay gave Peter Smith the opportunity to score in the corner, only to be denied by the referee.
Datchworth were denied all the points late on as they went down 17-15 at Imperial Medicals.
A last-ditch try and touchline conversion meant disappointment.
Datchworth skipper Jamie Sinclair was understandably upset and said: "We failed to retain any possession in the second half and the pressure eventually told."
Richie Howells calmly slotted over a penalty to give his side the lead and Datchworth had what seemed a try unjustly disallowed.
Flanker Tom Ruffle collected a poor kick out of defence and set off down the touchline. Brushing aside some weak tackling, he managed to batter his way through and touchdown in the corner only for the referee to disallow the try, adjudging that a supporting player was blocking a defender.
Undeterred, Datchworth continued to keep up the pressure and did score a try before half-time.
Ruffle again carved through the home backline and offloaded to Howells who sold a dummy before crossing between the sticks. The usually reliable Howells somehow managed to push the conversion wide.
After the break, the Imperial Medicals' fly-half opened the home team's account with a penalty. Datchworth though soon added a second try as Andrew Tarsey kicked to the corner from a penalty.
The Datchworth pack then drove the lineout for a few yards before the ball went out to Henry Mountain coming off his wing to collect the ball at first receiver. He crashed over the gain line and fed Tarsey who was able to jink his way over for the converted score.
Datchworth looked in control at 14-3 but the home side came back to control possession for the remainder.
Their first try came from a well organised driving maul from 20 yards out which eventually crossed the line for the converted score.
The killer blow came two minutes from time as the ball was spread wide left and the Medicals left winger crossed in the corner. The fly-half slotted the conversion from the touchline to seal the result.