OMT's 2nd 5 14 Cuffley 1st
HMMT 3, Round 14 (re-arranged)
Cuffley travelled to Watford to play this rearranged game at Merchant Taylor's schools impressive sports ground. But with all that money and state of the art facilities they didn’t have a front row from the kick off. This obviously negated our powerhouse pack and made for a very disjointed and frustrating afternoon.
Playing against a strong wind and with a completely reorganisation backline Cuffley struggled to get any momentum. OMT’s failed to use the elements and wasted more than a few opportunities. Not for the first time this season our midfield defence stood up to OMT’s, Michael Stevens was as solid as ever but Matt Jones caused panic in almost every OMT attack, Chilli Charlton filling in at fullback ran every ball back, always making ground. But our forwards struggled due to the uncontested scrums and with the referee being assessed his decisions where at times pedantic to say the least. By far the best play in the first half was a breakaway by OMT’s from inside their 22, with their big winger outstripping the Cuffley defence he was free to run in from halfway, Cuffley have found some exciting talent this season particularly on the wing the youngest and probably fastest is Ben Taylor, Ben was on the opposite wing and moments earlier was injured, but he took off diagonally and caught the OMT’s player on the line to stop the try.
Half Time - OMT's 0 v 0 Cuffley
The second half started with Cuffley still not at their best even with the elements we struggled, if it hadn't been for our work at the breakdown mainly down to the return of Ollie Newland and his ability to turn ball over. The first score came for OMT’s as they moved the ball wide their big winger made up for not scoring in the first have by crashing over in the corner. Conversion missed 5 pts to nil.
Cuffley now realised they needed to get into the match, a few changes of personnel put a bit of urgency into our play Joe Garrett went onto the wing and Nick Dean into the back row. We eventually started to play the type of rugby that has put us near the top of the league, crashing into the breakdown and forcing OMT’s to drop ball, from a turnover ball in midfield Rannner found Michael Stevens giving him rare front foot ball he ghosted through a gap in the defence and found Chilli in support to put the afterburners on to touch down near the posts. Michael added the 2 to put Cuffley in front for the first time in the match.
OMT’s to their credit came back and looked strong, but the tide had turned and Cuffley started to dominate and started to use the elements to push OMT's deep into their 22. All the game was now played in this area and after a series of drives Spencer Linsell crashed over only for the referee to stop play for a head injury. Unfortunately for Spencer this was the second time in the game he had crossed the whitewash only for the ref to disallow the score.
From the resulting scrum Michael Foreman picked up and was stopped just short but our pick and drive game saw Marc Bright crash over to score, Michael again added the conversion for a final score of OMT’s 5 Cuffley 14.
This was a game that was at times painful to watch and the boys said just as bad to play in, but sometimes you just have to win game however you can. With two league games to go barring any natural disasters Cuffley should finish 2nd in the table and gain promotion for the second year running.