By Ollie Green
A beautiful day for the beautiful game
Saturday 24th October - OMT's 10-46 Berkhamsted
1.Ieuan Griffiths 2.Dan Prince 3.Tim Brickle 4.Tom Hansard 5.Rob Peche 6.Will Barker 7.Matt Cain 8.Ollie Green 9.Karl Wordsworth 10.Dan Vials 11.Ryan Gow 12.Tom Major 13.Michael Hollington 14.Will Oare 15.Sam Connelly 16.Kieran Williams 17.Andy Cato 18.Rod Keating 21.Ron Herriott
We are used to relying on our backs for the points on game day. This week was a welcome change as our forwards chipped-in with 7 (yes 7) out of our 8 tries. Credit must go to OMT’s who turned-up a few players short for this fixture and still gave us a good game and credit also to Rod, Ron and Kieran who all pulled on a gold jersey to make a fair match of this one. It was a great day for rugby and OMT’s facilities and pitches are likely to be the best that we’ll enjoy playing at this level.
Berko were always in control of this one, however it must be said that at times, the 46-10 score line did flatter us somewhat.
We had a number of players playing out of position and they all did a solid job. Wordy was at scrum-half, Dan Vials stood in at 10 and ‘Birthday Boy’ Foxy was in an unfamiliar position at 13. All three of these guys did a solid job.
It was a scrappy first few minutes (as is often the case when playing in the lower merit tables), however Berko drew first blood. It was one of our new boys that made this try. Some good work by the forwards set a platform for Will Barker to attack. He did a neat hand-off, beat a couple of OMT’s defenders then set the ball for the Berko Hooker to cross from just a yard or two out. Incidentally, it must be noted that Will Barker and his wife have a little one on the way in the next couple of weeks and due-date is a match day. We were pleased to hear that Will has already confirmed his availability for that game. Good lad.
Ryan Gow was our next scorer. Ryan is one of the Weston Homes boys and although so far, he’s been an occasional player, he’s an extremely useful asset to the club. He has a blistering turn of pace and a dangerous side-step. Ryan scored one in each half to help keep the game out of reach for OMT’s. The last score of the first half was by Ollie Green (our unbeaten captain). Ollie received the ball in midfield and took it out wide before cutting in to finish under the posts. Our Hooker scored another try early in the first half and although OMT’s had a couple of unconverted scores of their own, it’s fair to say that the game was now well out of reach. For Berko it was a case of keeping the pressure on and extending our healthy points difference at the top of merit table 6.
Some of you may have noticed that I bought rather a large round in the bar. This was due to a big win I had at the bookies. Before the game Paddy Power were offering odds of 80/1 on Tom Hansard scoring a try and 66/1 on Matt Cain to get on the score-sheet. Some would say it’s a stupid bet but I placed 20p on a win double at overall odd of over 5,000/1 and BOOM, it came in. I’ll take my wife to Venice and maybe spend some money on the kids.
Both tries came in the second half. Matt’s was first. He picked up at the base of a ruck, kept his body low and confidently beasted his way over the line. Tom’s followed just a few minutes later. Also scoring from close range after some great build-up play from Will Griffiths who made a solid 10-15 yards in the opposition 22. Sandwiched between these tries was a score for Saffa. Just a few minutes prior to scoring his try, Rob was pronounced dead on the field of play after a massive hit from the OMT’s Number 8. Like a phoenix from the flames, Saffa rose, beat two defenders on the blind before chipping forward with a neat grubber-kick which he got on the end of to record another Berko score.
Our Uruguayan ref was a really nice bloke and allowed the game to flow. He did however send 2 of our players to the bin. Sam Connolly’s was particularly harsh when he was deemed to make a tackle without wrapping his arms.
Final score: OMT's 10-46 Berkhamsted. That’s 5 from 5 in the league. Top of the merit table and there’s a real feel-good feeling at the club !!
MotM. Karlston Wordworthy – Wordy’s first run-out at 9. A good job done. As always, a display of tough tackling and quick feet.
There a two very important people that need a special mention and a thank you:
Penny – Not many clubs in the lower merit tables can boast their own physio and it’s about time that Penny got a mention in a match report. Penny is there for us week-in week-out and without her valuable physio and first aid knowledge we’d be lost. Penny is an asset to the club and she’s a lovely person to have around. Thank you Penny.
Sally – Our team photographer. Let’s be honest - we’re a pretty vain bunch of guys and Sally is always there with camera at hand to capture the best of us. Not only is she a skilled photographer but she also spends hours compiling, cropping, cutting and tagging match day photos. On Saturday she set a new amateur rugby record. For the first time in Merit Table history, live photo TMO technology was used and resulted in a yellow card for an opposition player after a disputed high tackle was captured by sally’s expert eye. The ref accepted the evidence and sent the OMT’s No 8 to the bin. Well done Sal !!!
Dan Prince 27.10.15