Pinner seconds travelled away to Northolt for an away friendly at the weekend, looking for game time to further gel their ever improving squad.
With some new faces joining both the sport and the club it was important for the seconds to get as much game time as possible, and used the time without a league game to further bed in the inexperienced side.
Pinner hit the ground running and kept a physical Northolt pack at bay in defence and was able to make gains with the ball in hand, often breaking the line with runs from Ash Hicks at fly-half. Unfortunately, on multiple occasions, Pinner was unable to turn their line breaks and pressure into points and it proved costly, with Northolt snatching two breakaway tries against the run of play.
Pinner kept their heads however and came out of the break ready for action. An early penalty from Ash Hicks took the wind out of Northolt’s sails and they were forced to make clearing kicks from behind their own try line to escape further punishment. Unable to deal with the enthusiastic Pinner pack and robust defence from the backs, Northolt were forced to kick for territory time and again, forcing Pinner to play from deep. On one such occasion, they were able to snatch possession and force their way over from short range, whilst another rare occasion in the Pinner twenty-two yielded another try despite some valiant tackling from winger Tino Mahendram.
It wasn’t all in vain for Pinner, as late in the second half stand-in scrum-half ‘Chunky’ William Micallef was able to release Pinner new boy Phil Sutherland who rounded two defenders to dot down. Sutherland was able to unlock the Northolt defence yet again, this time being hauled down short, only to offload the ball to flanker Arran Ross who finished his debut with a try of his own. Chunky Micallef was unable to convert.
Pinner left the field with heads held high and can be proud of the fight they put up against a considerably more experienced unit in Northolt 1st XV.
Final Score 29 – 13
Special mentions to Daniel Downer, playing his first game of rugby. Also to Ramzi Ramzi, Philip Sutherland and Arran Ross, welcome to the club lads!
Pinner 2nds play away against Chess Valley on the 5th of November.