CW vs Meraloma RFC Premiers Game Report
Saturday, April 20, 2013 CWRFC vs Meraloma RFC. 2 games
Clouded over; spit of rain towards the end of the match
This game scribe was reminded of another must win game played on this pitch some years ago that went into quadruple overtime on the strength of a last ditch try by Jeremy Cordle. A Ryan Smith drop goal eventually won the match that day.
In a must win game, and a win that had to also gain a bonus point and deny a bonus point to the Lomas in order to secure a playoff spot, this was gut check time. Even with a scintillating performance of a week ago when Burnaby Lake came to Windsor Park with 9 straight game wins behind them were summarily dispatched by an on fire CW team, this could be for naught if the goals set for this Saturday vs Lomas were not met. This was also a Loma alum day and year end dinner so Lomas hit the park against the travelers with this added support crowd. As in the game last weekend, CW appeared to be the smaller pack of forwards but all ready and tensed for battle. Whistle blows – game on. CW playing uphill in the first half and from the first minute, knowing they needed to score at least 4 tries while ferociously defending their own line. First twenty minutes was stiff and tight with neither team exerting a stamp on the game. CW pressing but unable to finish while spending a fair bit of time in the Loma red zone. A break down field for Lomas and an infraction by CW gives first opportunity to Lomas. Both touchies rule the kick successful but after a minute referee Smortchevsky ruled it a miss. CW had dodged a bullet and this seemed to galvanize the lads. Some wonderful attacking runs by Jonny Morris and Mozak Samson produced prodigious yards but no points – yet. Next CW infraction gave Lomas a very kickable shot – 3 0 Lomas. Some minutes later, quick hands in the backs saw the side stepping and very fast breaking Ciaren Hearn gain huge yards and with a feed to support runner Mike Fuilefau to put him away. Convert missed 5 – 3 CW. It has to be noted at this point that the Men of the Match, possibly for the second week in a row, had to be the CW front row. The united power, precision and polish of these three men caused the Lomas pack fits all day with wheeled scrums and yard gaining marches down the field. It was only a matter of time before Thornber, on a tear all season and again putting on a dominant performance, took to his heels for CW try #2 out wide. Convert missed BUT by half time and playing uphill, CW now had ½ the number of required tries and the whole team was starting to roll, retain possession and cause the large Loma forwards to defend for long stretches. Goodland out after playing most of the first half and in comes Rhys Jones in the back row in support of his team and behemoth brother Dylan at #8 – having another characteristically bullocking, rampaging game. 3 – 10 at the half and now CW has the significant slope. Early in this half, a deeply frustrated Loma front row player finally lost it and after the smoke had cleared, he had 10 minutes to think about his temper on a yellow card. In this ten minutes, CW scored twice with first Dylan Jones going over for the try - convert Hearn, then Fuilefau for his brace after some remarkable running – convert Hearn. Score now 26 – 3. Four tries scored; slope on the side of CW who were playing sublime rugby with the clock showing perhaps ten minutes to play. The game got a bit interesting when Lomas scored and converted – 26 – 10. But then Lomas began a long series of pick and goes in sight of the goal line and the clock was running. CW defence was outstanding 1 – 15. No errors made. Clock runs out and mission accomplished! The leadership and play of captain Matt Buckley was superb in the face of considerable Loma attention. For a second week, it would be unfair to single out any more players as every single man came to win, support their teammates and played well. And they were all saying after the match – “two more games to go!”