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Home > News > Sevenoaks A XV come unstuck at Lords Wood
Your News Sevenoaks A XV come unstuck at Lords Wood

Another week, and once more complete confusion regarding selection for the Oaks A XV. Another week scratching around for players to fill the team out, leading one to wonder where they all go. But eventually Captain Rosier managed to obtain the bare minimum for battle although two were admittedly walking wounded.

This week we had the luxury of fielding 6 players from the previous week in the clash with a Lords Wood side who, like their neighbouring clubs have a habit of wreaking havoc at the breakdown. Oaks started much the stronger with fine drives from Kelly, Daniels and Lynch pushing Lords Wood back into their 22. Oaks pressed for the try, but on what was to become the theme for the match, all the hard work and effort resulted in nought as Lords Wood defended resolutely and managed to pilfer the ball at the breakdown to relieve the pressure.

The next quarter resulted in Lords Wood getting some possession and sucking in the defence after several industrious drives by their forwards, resulting in a mismatch out on the left which was converted by the home side to take a 7-nil lead.

Oaks regrouped and again started dominating possession with fine runs from Thurnell, Woolacott and the irrepressible Browning gaining the hard yards. Unfortunately through some mysterious and perhaps illegal work at the breakdown the home side managed to slow down and eventually turnover the ball. Tempers began to become strained at this stage as Lords Wood collapsed a scrum resulting in an injury for the returning Scott who was giving his opposite number a torrid time in the scrums. Scott had to leave the fray and Browning assumed the position in the scrums, leaving Oaks a number shy in the pack.

Although down in numbers Oaks played much the better rugby, but due to a lack of precision and sometimes calmness, chances went awry. As the half moved to its final quarter Oaks were caught cold by Lord Wood who ran in two converted tries which left a healthy 21-0 lead for the home side.

The second half went pretty much the way of the first with Oaks dominating possession, Rosier who was marshalling his back line, probed along with Doughty and Kloppers keeping the defence on their toes, but a good break by Louis amounted to nothing as the Lords Wood pack came in off their feet, pulled the ball back from the hands of Kavanagh and broke to take the first try of the half.

To their credit Oaks, did not allow this travesty to get to them and dominated the remaining 20 minutes of the game. One such period of play led to Lynch and Browning almost crossing either to be pulled back for some innocuous illegality or losing the ball just before crossing. With the numerical advantage Lords Wood appeared to be happy to sit back and defend as wave after wave of Oaks players tried to force their way over with the impressive Eaves working his socks off to get them on the board. The final ten minutes of the game was all Oaks with Hayward and Josh going close, but every time the ball made contact with the ground, it was swarmed on by Lords Wood players who appeared to be practising for the 2012 Olympics in diving.

Unfortunately the final act of the game resulted in a try for Lords Wood, after going close with several drives Kavanagh tried to release the backs from quick ruck ball, taking contact before trying to release Rosier, unfortunately a Lords Wood hand managed to block the pass, although the ball went forward a good 5 yards the referee let play continue as Lords Wood swept the length of the field to put the final nail in the coffin.

Although defeated, the team tried what it could, but as ever the result emphasised the need for the mentality to be right prior to kick off, as it is nigh on impossible to change a mindset mid game. Hopefully this week selection will not be based on the lottery system and players will be aware of their challenges.

But a final note of thanks for Louis and Kloppers for playing through the pain barrier, when they would obviously have preferred to nurse their injuries.

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