Shelford — Romans


Romans savour a win down Shelford Way

The Romans marched North-East last weekend, up the A10 to the Shelford RFC enclave just south of Cambridge. The hosts have a spanking new 4G ‘carpet’ but with their 1st team in action, the As were banished to pitch 3 to strut their stuff in more traditional and ‘earthy’ surrounds. Still, the ground had just about thawed out and it was game on for a pumped up Romans side who have a put in some strong performances over recent weeks without getting the return. On an artic December Saturday, it was time to get back to that winning feeling.

The Romans got cracking with a whirlwind first twenty minutes. The set piece was dominant, hard yards were being gained with every carry and the defence stood strong and resolute. Two sweet tries ensued from this high tempo start – with back row brethren Will Martin and Andrew Edwards Bailly both going over from short range after sustained pressure. A Shelford pen sandwiched between these two OA tries made it 12-3 but the hosts came back with a counter-attacking try which brought the score to 12-10 at the half. After a strong start, the Romans had lost some control and were ruing a number of missed chances to put some clear daylight between the teams.

It was all the play for in the 2nd half and the Romans seemed to be getting back into the groove with an early try for Jordan Sullivan after some great hands down the left flank. 17-10 but not for very long as Shelford made the most of some soft defensive work to score under the posts. This was a pivotal time in the match but OAs kept their nerve and surged back into the lead from a well worked move off a scrum which led to fly half for the day Nigel Southcombe slicing through from a nicely weighted pass by scrum half Ross Parsons. Joe Hearle converted, we were looking good at 24-17, and looking even better when winger Will Hague Blundy touched down on the right, after a good line break by centre Dan Odita, making it 31-17.

A Ross Parson try gave the Romans more breathing space but this was sandwiched between two highly avoidable Shelford scores which left the final result at 38-29 to the good guys. Positives on the day included a dominant set-piece, some good continuity and ‘go forward’ and some well-worked tries. Areas to work on include kick-chase and some of our skills under pressure. In truth, it should have been more clear-cut but still good to savour a win on chilly day down Shelford way. Let’s build on it.


Tom Hadley
Romans Head Coach


Venue

Shelford Rugby Club
Shelford Rugby Club, The Davey Field, Cambridge Rd, Great Shelford, Cambridge CB22 5JJ

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