Bryne's maiden try enough to secure semi-final berth
INTERMEDIATE Cup holders Henley Hawks made it through to this season's semi-final after running out 15-12 winners at Old Albanians on Sunday
INTERMEDIATE Cup holders Henley Hawks made it through to this season's semi-final after running out 15-12 winners at Old Albanians on Sunday.
The undefeated hosts, who recently secured the league title from a division below the Hawks, had high hopes of maintaining their impressive run going into the game.
In horrendous first half conditions the Hawks played into the wind which was bending the posts combined with sleet.
The Hawksâ?? game plan went out the window and it was a day to be a forward. Attempting to kick or pass any distance brought about errors and throwing into the lineouts was never going to be straight.
The hosts took advantage of the elements as Henley had to run everything. A knockout brought about a scrum, which led to a well-worked backs move and the opening score to the Saints.
Henley started to work their way up field through some good close in line breaks from Allen and Hearn. With an Old Albanians line out 10-metres out, Wheeler picked off the throw and set up a driving maul. Wysocki-Jones capitalised from the forward effort to crash over.
Saints pinned Henley back into the 22 and a good break from their centre put them back in front at 12-5.
The Hawks were now starting to exert their forward pressure and dominated the scrum throughout. Dudding darted through to start a fine period of continuity in the opposition half. Wheeler then timed her run well to finish off. It was an all-important score to stay in touch going into the second half.
Now with the elements in their favour the Hawks were relentless in their defence to stop any forward progress as the hosts were now struggling to work their way out.
The pressure was mounting as Henley continued to probe, but due to some solid Old Albanians defence it wasnâ??t until the 65th minute that the much-needed points came. The ball worked its way to Atkinson, who sped to the line. A well-timed tackle forced the ball back, whilst over the line, only for Bryne to be on hand to dive on the loose ball and score her maiden try.
The Hawks played smart rugby and Old Albanians never got out of their half. At the death Lathbury Haig almost snuck in the corner and the stop in play brought about the final whistle.
In the semi-final Henley have been drawn at home to Loughborough Ladies. The tie is due to be played on Sunday, March 15.
Henley Hawks Women: 1 Kerry Beech, 2 Lucy Allen, 3 Bobby Barrett, 4 Emma Tadman, 5 Katy Wysocki-Jones, 6 Tina Simpson, 7 Amy Atkinson, 8 Anne Wheeler, 9 Yaz Lathbury-Haig, 10 Carly Dudding, 11 Rachel Parry, 12 Elizabeth Hearn, 13 Ann-Marie Solowin, 14 Aisling Byrne, 15 Annette Tomas. Replacements: Mel McKenzie-Dalton, Jenni Balmer, Sarah Adams, Lauren Cadle, Charlotte Sealey, Maddy Peris.