Gillingham Anchorians RFC VS Bromley RFC
BROMLEY WIN AT GILLINGHAM BUT WHAT WAS THE RESULT?
Bromley travelled to Gillingham Anchorians on Saturday with a much changed team in terms of personnel and positionally due to injury and unavailability. With the home side having much better results in the last couple of months this now appeared a tricky assignment. It was no surprise that Bromley looked a bit out of sorts in the first quarter and with Gillingham relishing the challenge it was game on. After ten minutes of pressure Anchorians were awarded a kickable penalty but this was missed and the game became attritional with neither team getting into the ascendancy and after thirty minutes it was still 0-0. Things looked a bit ominous for the visitors however as they began to leak penalties leading to another shot at the posts for Gillingham but this was again missed. This was the signal for Bromley to up the ante with Sam Holland intercepting a pass leading to a sweeping move which released Jack Saunders to score a certain try. But no the referee blows his whistle, calls play back and awards a penalty to Bromley for a high tackle – no words. Undeterred Bromley ran the penalty but were held up illegally and the Gillingham number three went for a sunbathe on the sidelines for ten minutes. The away side kept attacking but were held up again but were not to be denied and Saunders crashed over from about ten metres and the conversion was expertly kicked by Alex Griffiths. Half time and 7-0 to Bromley.
Early in the second half the experienced James Powell had a really powerful run but sadly lost control of the ball as he was about to deliver the coup de grace. Bromley were now beginning to assert themselves leading to Gillingham conceding a series of penalties and from one of these the ball was tapped and spread wide to the quick thinking George Hawkins who scored in the corner and this was brilliantly converted by Griffiths. Bromley were now firmly in charge and when a loose ball was hacked through any one of a number of the away side could have scored but the glory went to the deserving Cameron McCracken who is proving to be a valued member of the squad. Griffiths duly added the extras. Sixty minutes in and another penalty awarded to Bromley and this time it was dispatched to the corner. The lineout was taken cleanly and the ball was whizzed along the line for to Powell who kept a firm grip on it this time to score out wide with Griffiths just missing the difficult conversion.
With the game now lost Anchorians rallied a bit and applied a fair bit of pressure which saw them rewarded with a try from close in which went unconverted. Bromley then took a firm grip on the game and Saunders burst through to score another certain try but no the referee whistles, calls play back and awards a scrum to Bromley. Perhaps there was a good reason for this but those watching could not fathom it. The game meandered to a conclusion and Bromley were victors by 26 points to 5. Considering all the changes this was a good all round effort and credit to the home side who challenged Bromley all over the park and gave them a serious examination at the set pieces. For Bromley Saunders was a marauding pest to the home side all afternoon, Holland had a notable game, Rice at fly half is developing and Alex Griffiths proved what a good all round footballer he is. Going back to the score – four tries and three conversions makes 26-5 and a bonus point win. It is officially recorded as 24-5 with no bonus point at the moment of writing this report. Hopefully this will get corrected soon.
Back at HQ the seconds were taking on Dartfordians in a Merit Table game. This turned out to be a highly entertaining encounter with a massive Dartfordians pack up against a lighter but more mobile opposing eight. In some ways this worked out to be an even encounter but Bromley had the better of the game in the backs and scored some super tries and probably left a few more out there due to over elaboration or some great last ditch tackling from the opposition. Mention should be made of the rather large unit from Dartford who flopped over the line three times leaving a trail of destruction behind him. Hard to say what the score was but it was something like 57-25 to Bromley.
Next week the first team are at home to Southwark Lancers who gave Bromley a run for their money in the away fixture in November. The seconds have a very difficult away game at Alleynians but they have been in decent form recently so we wish them well. The thirds have a home game against Beccehamians and injuries permitting, availability improved and no distractions from international rugby on the television there is a good chance this game can take place.