Monday, 27 May 2019

Thurton’s four tries leave Falcons reeling

THE Henley Falcons U20s lost out in their inaugural match under the floodlights at Dry Leas last Friday evening against a strong Henley College 2nd side.

Despite only having met for a few sessions before the match, the Falcons side played with confidence and belief, and although the College scored a few late tries to tilt the score line, it was a relatively even contest.

On a gusty evening the first half saw both sides evenly matched and in the first 15 minutes the Henley U20s side had the better of the early exchanges.

Some quick recycling saw good footwork from Archie Van Dijk to score in the right-hand corner. The next score came from some good team build-up play, culminating in a fine break by Tom Priestley — one of several clean line-breaks from him in the game — before an offload to Harry Sayer, who then got the ball away to Rhys Edwards, who also had a solid game, to score a good team try. The Falcons spent a huge amount of time defending. Priestley was the standout performer for the hosts, captaining the side with maturity and leading by example and with several line-breaks and a couple of individual turn-overs helped his team's cause, he was always in the thick of the action.

Rhys Edwards was solid in the centre while Van Dijk was elusive and a threat from the back. Vlad Dun Brava had a powerful first half before a niggling injury saw him leave the field, and James Rhodes played well throughout.

A lack of match fitness meant the second half was played much on the back foot with a well drilled larger squad from the college dominating throughout.

Despite some resolute defending, the College’s left-wing Alex Turton raced in for four quick tries in the last 20 minutes to put the game out of sight.

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