Thursday, 11 August 2022

Returning centre in fine form

ALICE Denton made a heroic return as Abbey Nuns bounced back to winning ways with a bonus-point victory over Wimbledon to maintain their grip on Championship SW 2, writes Fiona Tomas.

The centre, who recently re-registered for Abbey after a playing stint at Tyrrells 15s outfit Wasps, crossed the whitewash and was clinical in front of the posts.

Further scores from Lou Burgham, Annette Tomas and a penalty try ensured the Nuns maximum points.

The gritty conditions did little to deter Abbey who, after a bright start, flooded forward in attack through forwards Hollie King, Jess Potter, Claire Stevens and Meaghan Fowler, which allowed the backs to test their opposite line.

After scrum-half Ellie Rice upped the tempo, it was Burgham who cut a line through Wimbledon’s defence, with Denton adding the extras. Abbey closed out a dominant first half as Denton and Tomas both crossed, before Tomas pinpointed a territory kick in the hosts’ half for the fiery backs to chase, only for Burgham to be pulled back and rewarded a further five points.

Abbey’s free-flowing rugby was backed up with a period of staunch defending off their own five-metre line summing up their resilience.

The second half saw the Nuns storm forward as the visitors went in search of a valuable bonus point. Inspired by dominant scrummaging spearheaded by Stevens, Abbey’s line speed forced Wimbledon further on to the back foot as Tomas kicked through for the bonus point try.

Wimbledon enjoyed the final word, scoring two tries in quick succession after consistent pressure in the Nuns’ 22.

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