Half the battle al­ready won for the Ab­bots

RUGBY

Harefield Gazette - - SPORT -

HILLING­DON Ab­bots con­sol­i­dated their lead at the top of Herts/Middx Di­vi­sion One on Satur­day as they ended phase one with victory at Hen­don.

The di­vi­sion’s for­mat this year sees the league split into two at the half­way mark, with pro­mo­tion to Herts/Middx One up for grabs to those in the top half in phase two.

Neil Gordge crossed the white­wash in the first five min­utes for Ab­bots’ first points, con­verted by fly-half El­liot Wake, while full back Brett Parn­ham showed his form and pace, col­lect­ing the high balls with ease and run­ning them back at Hen­don.

It did not take long be­fore an in­fringe­ment saw Wake score a 40-me­tre penalty to in­crease the lead and with Ab­bots dom­i­nat­ing pos­ses­sion and ter­ri­tory, the hosts barely moved out of their half.

Any clear­ance kick was run back in at pace and driven for­ward by a strong and fo­cused pack, which saw Adam Web­ster peel off and cross for the sec­ond try, Wade kick­ing the ex­tras.

The sec­ond half saw an im­proved Hen­don crank up a gear, tak­ing the play to the vis­i­tors, but Ab­bots kept to the plan, de­fend­ing and at­tack­ing in equal mea­sure.

In the last minute, with the

TJG1ST light fad­ing and the hosts on the attack, Ab­bots found them­selves de­fend­ing on their try line and watched with ut­ter dis­be­lief as the op­po­si­tion player lost the ball for­ward but was awarded the try, although in the end it did not re­ally mat­ter.

In the same di­vi­sion, Uxbridge won 20-5 at Chess Val­ley but Ick­en­ham were down 51-0 at home by Wat­ford and, in Lon­don One North, Ruis­lip were seen off 38-28 at home to Eton Manor.

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