News from the 1st-XV
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Saturday, 10th March 2018
Old Reigatians 71 Andover 7
Oakwood sponsored Andover made the long journey to promotion chasing Old Reigatian last Saturday and came away thoroughly beaten by the impressive home side.
Andover were a shadow of the side that famously avoided relegation on this ground last season and continued their topsy-turvey form of late.
Andover travelled with just seventeen players and no backs replacement, which was always to be a tough ask against such a good running side.
With forwards Billy Pollard and Tom Waite having to play centre the omens were not good from the start and although the whole team tried manfully until the end, the result was never in doubt.
Already behind Andover made their task even tougher, when skipper Alex Hibdige was shown a straight red card on the half hour for foul play.
The fourteen players left behind tried hard to cope and up front did have their successes especially at scrum time.
Young flankers Fin Waite and Alex Arter continued to show their battling qualities and Nic Reed and Tom Erskine tried everything to stay in the game.
Callum Farr and Harrison Pape worked hard at half back and Charlie Deaval put in a real shift on the wing.
It was never enough however as the hosts ran in eleven tries to blow Andover away.
Andover never gave up and finished strongly, doinating the last ten minutes and scoring a push over try at the end, finished by Farr and converted by Charlie Waite, to cap a typically war horse performance from him.
Afterwards director of rugby Andy Waite was fairly upbeat ' At this stage of the season we have to try and target certain games and get through others.'
' This was not a game where we would have expected anything especially with the availability we had, so the target was to get through it and live to fight again. I thought the lads did that and can really hold their heads high. I'd especially like to thank harry Foxwell for making the journey at short notice and putting in a solid performance on the wing'.
'With other results going our way we've not lost ground and this looks like being a fight to the finish in a very tight league. We are in the box seat though and if we can get one more win we should be getting towards complete safety.'