Hendon suffer defeat against UCS Old Boys

PUBLISHED: 14:00 17 September 2018 | UPDATED: 15:01 17 September 2018

The latest rugby news from the local scene (pic: George Phillipou/TGS Photo)

The latest rugby news from the local scene (pic: George Phillipou/TGS Photo)

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Herts/Middlesex One: Hendon 29 UCS Old Boys 35

First-half defensive errors and conceded penalties cost Hendon dearly in a 35-29 defeat at home to UCS Old Boys in Herts/Middlesex One.

The Greenlands Lane club played up the slope in the first period and were put under immediate pressure when a backline defensive error allowed Old Boys an easy try out after only three minutes on the clock, with Nat Breakwell dotting down.

From the restart, Hendon were sluggish in getting into the game and UCS were back into the home team’s territory.

The pressure told as the Greenlands Lane outfit conceded an offside penalty inside the 22 for an easy conversion from Corne Jansen van Vuuren to give Old Boys an 8-0 lead after 10 minutes.

Hendon’s pack then gradually got the home outfit back into the match from the scrums, pushing UCS off their own ball and creating problems for their scrum-half.

In the tight, prop Paul Julian excelled and was supported by Donal O’Sullivan in securing early ball, giving the backline the width to push upfield.

After 25 minutes, Hendon fullback Dan Watterson ran from defence to set up a maul on the UCS 22-metre line to push to the line for Mike Culhane to score Hendon’s opening try converted by Watterson.

From the restart, Old Boys worked again into the Hendon half and their forwards mauled over after several attempts to score a converted try through Ahmad Ghanem to extend their lead to 15-7.

The Greenlands Lane club knew they could absorb this score into the second period and looked to be in control as they pushed into the UCS half, but again lost possession.

The UCS fullback cleared for his team with a long kick downfield that was chased by several players to score another easy try from van Vuuren to make it 22-7 at the interval.

Hendon used the slope to full advantage early in the second half, going straight into attack with a driving maul to the Old Boys line with O’Sullivan scoring out wide.

The game was now all about possession as UCS gathered from the restart, but the Greelands Lane club stopped the attack.

Again, though, the hosts conceded a penalty in their 22 for UCS to slot over through van Vuuren to make it 25-12.

From the restart, Donal O’Sullivan won a UCS lineout on the 22-metre line for scrum-half Billy Burrell to set up the maul, with winger Will Theaker joining in to break away to score out wide.

Old Boys then attacked and again the home team conceded a penalty, slotted over by van Vuuren for UCS to extend their lead to 28-17.

Midway through the period, Hendon pushed a scrum back with late ball to their backline allowing O’Sullivan to intercept and score a Watterson-converted try.

It was then UCS’ turn to score and a rolling maul upfield could not be stopped as Old Boys went over through Sam Richardson to lead 35-24.

Having already picked up a bonus point for scoring four tries, a try from Theaker in the final play of the game also saw Hendon take a losing bonus point against UCS. Hendon visit Saracens Amateurs for their next league encounter on Saturday.

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