Thursday, 25 April 2019

Bulls hold off Raiders’ late charge to secure first league win of season

Bulls hold off Raiders’ late charge to secure first league win of season

HENLEY BULLS recorded their first Zoo League win of the season in a close encounter with Worthing Raiders 2nds last Saturday.

The game didn’t get off to best of starts for the Bulls as a few miss-tackles, a soft turnover and a scrum lost against the head saw Worthing race into a 5-0 lead after five minutes.

After this the Bulls came back into the game and were starting to put the phases together. With the forwards carrying well 18-year-old scrum half Ben Venner was able to get the ball away to Peter Kerins to allow the backs to attack.

Liam O’Neill, in his first game since breaking his hand, made a good break from the half line and fed Matt Mann who found captain Scott White to level the scores. However, this was Mann’s last play as a neck injury forced him to leave the pitch.

The last play of the half saw Kerins feed O’Neill who drew his man and fed Toby Stevens who came at pace through the gap before feeding young Rhys Edwards who dashed in from 22 metres. O’Neill added the extras to make it 12-5 to the Bulls at half-time.

The second half kicked off with Worthing on the front foot as they took the game to Bulls but their line would not be broken as some outstanding work from White, Liam Goodison and James Dorchey-Carey kept the visitors out.

Following 15 minutes of pressure the Bulls made their way up the pitch into the Worthing 22-meter line, a good break from Goodison who fed hooker Elliot Deacon to crash over with O’Neill adding the extras to make it 19-5. Worthing hit straight back to make it 19-10. It was all Worthing again but White, who was having an outstanding game, was again making tackle after tackle.

The Bulls made their way up to the Worthing 22 where a line catch and drive took the Bulls to five metres out and Dorchey-Carey popped over on his debut. O’Neill added the extras to make it 26-10 with 10 minutes to play.

Worthing came straight back and put the pressure on the Bulls line to score a converted try to make it 26-17. Almost straight away Worthing were back as the Bulls began to tire and relentless pressure soon told as the visitors scored another converted try to reduce the arrears to just two points with two minutes remaining on the clock.

Worthing broke out of their half and were back into the Bulls half but they gave a penalty away and this allowed the hosts to kick out and get their first win of the season.

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