Black and Am­bers lose after first-half col­lapse

Aldershot News & Mail - - SPORT - By TOM MAL­LEY

DI­REC­TOR of rugby Gareth Rise is look­ing to take the pos­i­tives from Cam­ber­ley’s dis­ap­point­ing 34-26 de­feat to KCS Old Boys.

In Satur­day’s bat­tle of third ver­sus 10th in the Lon­don One South, Rise’s side just could not de­liver the per­for­mance and re­sult that was ex­pected of them in or­der to aid their pro­mo­tion push go­ing into the re­main­ing weeks of the sea­son.

De­spite mak­ing a pos­i­tive start early on and tak­ing the lead, Cam­ber­ley even­tu­ally went in 31-7 down at half-time and con­se­quently gave them­selves too much to do in the sec­ond half.

Rise said: “The first-half per­for­mance was way be­low our stan­dard, I thought we were sec­ond best at the break­down and in open play.

“I thought there were some pos­i­tives in our set pieces which we chat­ted about at half-time and ul­ti­mately in the sec­ond half, in­stead of re­ally fo­cus­ing on the re­sult, we fo­cused on the task of nail­ing our pro­cesses.

“I think we built be­hind our scrum and set piece.

“We got bet­ter at the break­down and to win the sec­ond half 26-3 means that we’re on a good pos­i­tive path mov­ing to­wards the next game, but ul­ti­mately frus­trated with our first-half per­for­mance which prob­a­bly lost us the game.

“I’ve said to the boys that we have to judge our­selves on the re­sult, but you can’t give a team a 31 to seven lead at half time. We have to take pos­i­tives and keep build­ing and im­prov­ing.”

The game hap­pened to be a re­ar­ranged fix­ture from ear­lier in the sea­son, so the game in hand gave Cam­ber­ley the op­por­tu­nity to gain some ground on those above them and Rise re­grets not mak­ing the most of the op­por­tu­nity.

He said: “There was an op­por­tu­nity for us to close the gap on the lead­ers. Ul­ti­mately, any time you lose rugby, you’re frus­trated.

“We’re a com­pet­i­tive group of men, we work hard at what we do and it’s just frus­trat­ing to not come away with a re­sult but there’s a small pos­i­tive to get a bonus point out of the game.

“We’ve had a tough sea­son and a high turnover of play­ers through in­juries. I think we’ve prob­a­bly been more set­tled in the for­wards, but at the back we’ve had a lot of turnovers, which is frus­trat­ing, but I felt the team that went out to­day was more than ca­pa­ble of win­ning that game, so there can’t be an ex­cuse.

“Ob­vi­ously we want to be in con­tention for the league this sea­son and we’ll keep do­ing ev­ery­thing we can. There’s still a lot to play for and re­sults will have to go in our favour. Of course we want to be pro­moted but we’ll just have to fo­cus on each week as we can.”

CAM­BER­LEY’S pro­mo­tion bid took a hit as they lost 34-26 at home to KCS Old Boys.

The hosts came away with just a try bonus point when they real­is­ti­cally needed a five-point haul to get back into con­tention.

The game got off to a promis­ing start for the Black and Am­bers when, with just two min­utes on the clock, a smart in­ter­cep­tion by Matt Dal­rym­ple saw the young fly-half put Ash Wright away to down un­der the posts for a con­verted try.

The restart was well taken by Alex Hughes and a penalty, awarded for the No. 8 be­ing taken out in the air, saw Cam­ber­ley move into the vis­i­tors half. De­spite a good catch by Dom Sam­mut, the vis­i­tors soon turned over the pos­ses­sion and a neat cross-field kick was well taken by their winger who dot­ted down in the cor­ner after six min­utes.

Again Cam­ber­ley moved into the vis­i­tors’ half when Dy­lan Emer­ton col­lected an over­thrown li­ne­out and made good ground, but again, and not for the last time, pos­ses­sion was turned over and a chip ahead saw the ball bounce favourably and KCS dot­ted down un­der the posts for a con­verted try.

The restart saw Tom Allen run the ball back, but Cam­ber­ley seemed un­able to string any pos­ses­sion to­gether. The vis­i­tors ben­e­fited from a lucky charge down as play moved back into the Cam­ber­ley red zone, and the vis­i­tors soon ex­tended their lead with another try after 20 min­utes. Cam­ber­ley did have a pe­riod when they man­aged to main­tain pos­ses­sion, but then fell fur­ther be­hind when KCS fol­lowed a kick ahead and re­acted quicker than the Black and Am­bers de­fence, and with a neat flick pass they scored their bonus point try. On the stroke of half-time they added another con­verted try to lead 31-7 at the break.

Some great pres­sure from the restart even­tu­ally saw the Black and Am­bers drive for­ward from a li­ne­out and when the ball was swung wide good hands saw Alex Tur­ton cross in the cor­ner.

Cam­ber­ley clearly took heart from this score and mounted some real pres­sure, with Greg Franzel and Josh Wat­son mak­ing big car­ries into the KCS red zone, but the vis­i­tors were al­lowed to turn over pos­ses­sion and when they even­tu­ally cleared their lines Cam­ber­ley con­ceded a penalty which was con­verted.

Late in the game, Cam­ber­ley did man­age to up the in­ten­sity and re­place­ment prop Josh Thun­der­cliffe crossed un­der the posts for a try con­verted by Dal­rym­ple.

With the vis­i­tors in­fring­ing so reg­u­larly that the of­fi­cial was forced to take some ac­tion, it was much too late and in time added on another chip by Dal­rym­ple was col­lected by Jos Le­wan­i­tuva, who crossed for Cam­ber­ley’s fourth try which was con­verted by Dal­rym­ple to claim the try bonus point.

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