1st XV
Sat 06 Apr 2024  ·  Counties 1 Surrey/Sussex
Old Walcountians RFC
1st XV
Counts down after fifth successive loss

Counts down after fifth successive loss

Rob Murphy7 Apr - 14:07
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Defeat in the final League match of the 2023-24 season has resulted in Old Walcountians being relegated from Counties League 1 Surrey/Sussex.

Walcountians welcomed back several players after injury and, for one of the few occasions this season, had both their most penetrative runners, Omarie Brown and Dom Barnaby, in the starting lineup. There was little to separate the two sides in the opening 20 minutes, and the Counts often had the Trinity line under siege, with hooker James Ford and No 8 Tom Brown leading the cavalry charge. However, it was the boot of fly-half Ross Lever which gave Walcountians the lead after 15 minutes.

Trinity, who also were facing the risk of possible relegation, hit back with two tries as they took advantage of mistakes by Walcountians. The first, after 20 minutes came after they snapped up the ball after Walcountians’ backs miscued a pass while the second, nine minutes later, came when Trinity scrum-half Harry Wilson took a quick tap penalty and weaved his way through a static Walcountians defence to touch down. They added a third try on the 40-minute mark when their forwards drove over from a ruck on the Walcountians’ line.

There were raised hopes of a Walcountians comeback after winger Andy Togbolah scored a try in the 45th minute after being put clear on the right wing, with Ross Lever adding two more points with a towering conversion. But the second half was to be painful for Walcountians as the Trinity pack gained total supremacy in the set pieces and half-backs Dan Crouch and Harry Wilson pinned the Counts into their own half with a series of well-placed tactical kicks. Walcountians also did not help their own cause by repeated handling errors and ruck offences which handed the initiative to Trinity. Tries in the third and 16th minutes of the second half took the home side to a 31-10 lead.

Walcountians responded with a try of sheer brilliance from centre Dom Barnaby in the 25th minute as he broke from his own half and spectacularly outpaced the Trinity backline to touch down for a converted try. However, Trinity sealed victory with two more tries and a try in the final minute by the Counts full-back Hal Mogridge after fine approach work by centres Alex Skinner and Dom Barnaby was too late to change the result.

Walcountians finished the season in tenth place and, although 24 points clear of 11th-placed Kingston, were unlucky to be affected by movements in the national and regional leagues above them. Next season, they will be playing in Counties League 2 Surrey.

Old Walcountians:- Fletcher-Rogers, Togbolah, Barnaby, Skinner, Brown (O), Lever, French, Bell (Dan), Ford, Harris, Bell (Dom), Rees, Housden, Henderson, Brown (T).

Subs:- Mogridge, Sanders, Tilleray.

Match details

Match date

Sat 06 Apr 2024




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