Kilburn Cosmos produce second-half fightback to tame St Albans
PUBLISHED: 06:15 10 March 2017
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Kilburn Cosmos ended a run of three defeats in London North West Three with a 36-22 win over St Albans.
The victory saw the hosts overturn a 22-5 deficit early in the second half.
With regular captain and fly-half Fraser Hutt missing, Phil Cook stepped into the vital 10 role and started confidently.
However, given the muddy conditions and standing water it wasn’t an ideal day for Kilburn’s regular brand of adventurous rugby so having the pack dominant was going to be key.
An interception gave St Albans the lead with a try under the posts but the hosts found the spark they needed to get their game going through hooker Tom Ding.
After the forwards had worked their way up the field with good ball retention, Ding took an opportunity to dive for the line.
Unfortunately the Kilburn concentration and confidence had not fully returned and five minutes later a scattered Kilburn defensive line was broken for another converted try. A penalty put Saints 17-5 up at the break and despite strong words from Kilburn captain Andrew Brotherston wanting a reaction, they conceded another soft try soon after the kick-off.
But like the first half any reaction would come from the forwards and after strong forward charges by the pack, Dan Oliver fed Cook who throw a wonderful dummy and waltzed over from 10 yards.
A short time later Kilburn found themselves back in St Albans territory and it brought their third score, a deliberate knock-on giving a penalty try.
With their tails up and the replacements having a strong impact, in particular Obiora Ajufo, Kilburn were beginning to make big inroads into the St Albans defence.
Ajufo soon found himself within striking distance and he never hesitated, like a raging bull with a bad head he battered his way through the defensive line and slammed the ball down.
Cook’s conversion edged Kilburn in front for the first time and from then on, it was relatively one way traffic.
Alastair Brace added the next try with Cook adding the conversion before a final score completed the win.
Kilburn travel to Hitchin on Saturday and will be hopeful that their pitch is in better condition when they host Cheshunt in their next home game on March 25.