Saturday, 05 December 2020

Hosts have no answer to Abbey

ABBEY maintained their unbeaten Berks, Bucks and Oxon Premier Division record with an 11-try romp at Hungerford on Saturday.

ABBEY maintained their unbeaten Berks, Bucks and Oxon Premier Division record with an 11-try romp at Hungerford on Saturday.

With second placed Swindon College Old Boys having a league rest day and thereby playing one match less, Abbey moved 10 points clear at the top of the table.

Abbey were forced to make one change, Chris Shaw going in as flanker to replace unavailable Mike Beckly, Dan Pawlett playing alongside skipper Sam Hallett in the second row and winger Dylan Baptista returning from an overseas trip. Hungerford, hit by injury and unavailability, made five changes from the side that pushed hard at Rosehill early in the season.

Abbey had a dream start, playing downhill and with the wind, they secured the kick-off, a huge kick from fly half Tom Bird put play deep into Hungerford territory. The line-out was followed by a scrum from which Chris Shaw touched down a try, converted by fullback Tom Waterhouse to put Abbey 7-0 ahead. From here on Abbey scored a try every five minutes on average.

Six times the whitewash was crossed in the first half, and although Hungerford battled away in the second, five further tries were run in, and with six conversions, 71 points were clocked up without a reply.



The scores came across the team, Arron Ross in the centre top scored with a hat-trick, wingers Dylan Baptista and Steve Warwick took two each, and in addition to Shaw’s opening score, captain Sam Hallett in the second row, centre Dave Love and fullback Tom Waterhouse all touched down, with Waterhouse kicking the extras.

Abbey’s pack took the lion’s share of ball whether from the scrum or the line-out, regardless of who had the put in or throw in - Luke Daniels being the standout prop to be awarded man-of-the-match, whilst Shaw was adept at stealing Hungerford’s line-out ball.

Replacements Adam Postlethwaite and Callum Whylie continued the momentum to make it a satisfying afternoon for the league leaders.

Reading Abbey: Charlton, Toland, Daniels, S Hallett, Pawlett, Shaw, J Hallett, Emery, Bevan, Bird, Baptista, Love, Ross, Warwick, Waterhouse. Replacements:Postlethwaite, Whylie, Fungai.

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