After a fantastic Saturday of Six Nations rugby we are back to the business end of the Middlesex League play offs with the 1st team playing at home this Saturday against Chiswick 3rd’s (again!!)
Pinner beat Hammersmith & Fulham 22-12 in the final to win the Merit League
Pinner retained their 100% record by defeating fourth placed Chiswick III in the semi-final of the Middlesex Merit Table 5. They now play Hammersmith & Fulham V in the final at the Wasps ground in Acton on Saturday 11th April, KO 12:15pm. Two weeks earlier they defeated the same club 51 – 5 to reach the final of the Cup which also will be played at Wasps a week later. Although Chiswick brought a squad of 18 players only one was qualified to play in the front row. The regulations, which require a team to have a complete front row plus two replacements, meant that Pinner were automatically in the final but it was agreed to play the game anyhow with uncontested scrums. This diluted some of Pinner’s powerful forward play and, coupled with a swirling wind led to a scrappy game. The home side were first to score after ten minutes when, following a customary drive by number 8 Andrew Alexander the ball was quickly passed out to left winger Charlie Smith to score in the corner. The Chiswick backs always looked threatening but superb defence and fearless tackling kept them out till midway through the half. Pinner scrum-half Chris Jepsen was tacked and Chiswick regained the ball. Catching the home team out of position they managed their only try which was converted to give them a 7 – 5 lead. Pinner now pressed hard and elected to have a scrum when awarded a penalty. Being ‘uncontested’ they won the ball, driving forward to form a ruck. Winning the ball again Jepsen found captain Aaron Nicholas who passed to centre Ashley Hicks to put the home side back in the lead at 10 – 7 at the interval.
The second half started with Pinner showing greater purpose. A long kick by Jepsen produced a line-out on the Chiswick 22. Moving the ball to the left Hicks was on hand to get his second try. The wind was making place kicking difficult. Pinner now spent most of the time in the visitors half and their threatened counter-attacks were met with ruthless tackling. Once again, Pinner opted for a scrum from a penalty. The ball was recycled several times before prop-forward, Neill King who is making a habit of scoring tries advanced the score to 20 – 7. John Petrella made several of his bullocking runs brushing defenders aside. With time running out Chiswick fumbled the ball in their own 22. Nicholas quickly gathered it up to set up the final move which allowed Jepsen’s try to bring the final score to 25 – 7.
Pinner plan to make a day of the first of their two finals at Wasps. A coach for players and supporters will leave the clubhouse at Shaftesbury Playing Fields at 10 am with the hope of some silverware to display at their Awards Dinner on 24th April.
Under 14 XV
On Sunday the U14’s hosted Hertford in the driving rain. They started brightly with a try by Sam Alexander and were in contention at half-time being only 12 – 7 down. The second half combination of strong wind and more organised backs saw Hertford run in three tries to give a final score of 31 – 7 to the visitors. Pinner fought gamely throughout and the score flattered Hertford, which is a much larger club.
Pinner u14s took to the field with only 13 players helped by two from the u13 team, they started off well, but soon found Cheshunt had two runners within their team, which the Pinner team found difficult to stop in their tracks, this led to a half time score of 12 – 0
After a halftime team talk Pinner returned to the field with a bit more fire in their hearts, they began to take the game to Cheshunt camped near there try line Pinner finally got a 5m scrum which Tom Davies picked from his feet and thundered for the line to complete a unstoppable try, this was then successfully converted by Joseph Holden.
The restart went dead from the kick resulting in a 22 drop out, where Pinner started another attack on the Cheshunt try line, after a few tussles in midfield Joshua Parker-Brice made a darting run out wide supported well by James Nye who received the pop pass from the tackle on Josh Parker-Brice. Nye managed to squeeze into the corner for Pinners second try which was unconverted. Cheshunt were spurred on to use the runners again making use of the space available on the pitch due to the lack of numbers in the Pinner team, Cheshunt scored a penalty kick, and two converted tries leaving the final score 12 v 29 in Cheshunt favour.
On Sunday 22nd February Pinner U14s travelled to Watford RFC for a friendly fixture. The team took to the ‘marsh like’ field and from the whistle took the game to Watford in their half; a place they were to spend most of the first half.
Some great tackles and support play saw James Nye weave through the opposition to score Pinners opening try. On receiving the kick-off Pinner were back into the Watford half, with some powerful play saw a break by centre Tom Davies stride over the line for the second try, shortly followed by Sam Alexander crashing through the defence to score under the posts.
Two more tries followed before the half time whistle blew 3 from 5 tries were converted by Joseph Holden leaving Pinner with an impressive first half lead 31 – 0
The second half began with a revitalised Watford team, Pinners central defence managed to keep the game tight for most of the second half with crunching tackles coming in from both sides eventually Watford managed to get a unconverted try, which was almost instantly cancelled out by Tom Davies again crashing through the Watford defence to score under the post followed by a conversion by Joseph.
In the dying moments Watford found the Pinner defence on the wrong side of the 5m scrum and scored a try which was converted, leaving the final score Watford 12 V Pinner 38, a great result for this vastly improving Pinner squad.
After last week’s fiasco of an 108 – 0 win at Quintin, Pinner met much tougher opposition in Ealing Exiles at Hatch End. It was soon evident that they had a game on their hands when the visitors went ahead with a penalty after only five minutes. This galvanised Pinner into more effort and organisation. They soon responded when the forwards won the ball to put winger Naill Curran over for the first try converted by scrum-half Chris Jepsen. He soon added further points when Ealing were penalised for not retreating. Now Pinner were in control and attacks looked promising. On the half-hour, winning a scrum in front of the posts, the ball was quickly fed out to left-winger Michael Baggs who scored the first of his three tries. This gave the home side a comfortable 15 – 3 lead at half-time.
Straight into the second half Pinner showed their intent by attacking from their own half. Good work by the half backs got the line moving and Curran again finished things off in the corner. Jepsen added the conversion. Ealing Exiles now came more into the game but the Pinner defence held. Injuries to No. 8 Alexander and prop Ken Ryan meant the home team had to re-group. A couple of scoring chances went begging when the ball was dropped near the line. Into the last quarter and the Pinner backs were now buzzing. Curran proving his finishing power with his third try. Next Pinner were awarded a penalty on the half-way line and chose to run the ball. From the resulting ruck on the Ealing 5 m line replacement no. 8 Patrick O’Leary, playing in his first game for Pinner went over in the corner. Ealing responded as Pinner got a bit too casual. They drove into the home 22 and scored under the posts. Pinner were not yet finished and centre Rohan Desai sliced through the defence to score their seventh try under the posts. Jepsen brought the final score to 48 – 8.
Pelicans [2nd XV]: For the second week running the Pelicans have had their Herts – Middlesex Merit table match cancelled as their opposition could not raise a team. This avoided a long drive to Letchworth. They are awarded a 25 – 0 win giving them five out of five. However a last minute friendly home fixture with Chesham 2nd’s proved a bit too tough. Pelicans, reduced to fourteen men for most of the match, went down 70 – 12. Home tries were scored by scrum-half Graeme Searles after a sniping run from the base of a scrum on the visitors 22 and by left –winger Clyde Gordon sprinting from his own half. The conversion was added by Chris Hall. Later, in the clubhouse, Clyde was presented with his club Colours by Pinner President Dave Hiles in recognition for this long contribution as a coach and referee for the mini and youth sections.
Celebrations when on long into the evening marking ‘Deryck Westwood Day’ in memory of a former vice-president and founder member who left money in his will to mark his birthday each year in a suitable fashion.
Two out of two – Pinner Pelicans continued their winning ways with a great performance against Fullarians RFC on Saturday 27th September. Hopefully there will be a match report sent to the website soon, in the meantime here are some images from the game, again more to follow………
The Pelicans [2nd XV] took on Fullerians IV in the Herts-Middlesex merit table. They found the going much harder against one of the stronger team in the division and were soon a converted try down. However Pinner fought back and by mid-half had established a 10 – 7 lead through a penalty by fly-half Don Williams. Fullers responded with an unconverted try and penalty. Egged-on by home supporters Pinner added two further tries before half time. For one Arshood Joonoos, playing in his first rugby match, sprinting 40 m to score. Half-time score 22 -15 to the Pelicans.
In the second half the play was very even with neither team willing to concede territory. Both managed two further tries, one converted and the other not. In all Pelicans ran in five tries, three of which were scored by Rowan Desai and the other by youth team coach Clyde Gordon. The final score was 34 – 27.
The two Pinner teams are now undefeated in September and have amassed 190 points between them and are both sitting at the top of their respective merit tables.
Next Saturday the 1st XV have an away cup match against Civil Service Barbarians whilst the Pelicans travel to Hemel Hempstead for a merit table game.
Sporting their new kit Pinner hosted the league match against a strong London French side on Saturday 27th September. The match report will follow but in the meantime enjoy some of the images from the game…….
For the first time in several seasons Pinner, now with a regular 2nd XV, the Pelicans, hosted two home matches at Shaftesbury Playing Fields Hatch End on Saturday. Both teams had started the season with 60 + points victories and were looking to build on this success.
The 1st XV entertained London French in the Middlesex Merit table. From the start Pinner showed their intent and dominated the early play. The pack was in good form keeping the play in the opponents 22. The first try was not long in coming when after only eight minutes the pack drove the visitors back and number 8 Andrew Alexander forced his way over. Scrum-half Chris Jepsen added the extra points. Pinner continued to have territorial advantage with London French unable to match the home pack. However this led to some sloppy play allowing French to use their strong backs. From a Pinner mistake French ran in a try under the posts to equal the score. This galvanised the home side to greater efforts. Spurred on by the large crowd the pack reasserted its control. From a 5 m scrum Alexander dived over for his second try again converted by Jepsen. With half-time looming another Pinner lapse allowed French in for their second try to bring the score at the interval to 14 – 12 to the home team.
The second half started much as the first. Within 5 minutes Pinner one a scrum just inside the visitors half. Scrum-half Jepsen sprinted 40 m to score under the post and then convert his own try. He soon added a further 3 points from a penalty after French had failed to release the ball in a ruck. The game now went through a more even phase with the French backs always a threat. Once again it was the pack that restored order and with only five minutes remaining number 8 Alexander drove over for his third and Pinner’s fourth try. Jepsen once more added the points to give Pinner a comfortable 31 – 12 lead. Pinner now relaxed and were severely punished as the French backs, throwing caution to wind, attacked down the left wing. This resulted first in a converted try and then, straight from the kick-off, another as the final whistle blew. The final score was 31 – 24 earning bonus points for both teams.
The two Pinner teams are now undefeated in September and have amassed 190 points between them and are both sitting at the top of their respective merit tables.
Next Saturday the 1st XV have an away cup match against Civil Service Barbarians whilst the Pelicans travel to Hemel Hempstead for a merit table game.
Pinner, playing their first match of the season, travelled to nearby Uxbridge for a Middlesex Merit table clash. Inspired by their Pelicans [2ndXV] 60 – 0 win the previous week the 1st XV did even better with an eleven try 65 – 0 win. Playing up the slope in the first half they took a while to settle with several new players in the team. However the forwards soon showed their strength . With only 5 minutes gone Pinner won a scrum on the Uxbridge 22. No 8 Andrew Alexander drove forward to set up a ruck under the posts. The ball was quickly recycled to the right for centre Ashley Hicks to score the first try. This was converted by scrum half Chris Jepsen. Soon Pinner were on the attack again initiated by Jepsen with Alexander taking the ball close to the Uxbridge line. However the home side managed to clear their lines but from their kick out Pinner rested control in their own half and after a couple of passes Hicks broke from the half-way line out pacing any defence to score wide on the left. A few minutes later another scrum in the Uxbridge 22 saw Alexander pick up, dummy the defence to crash over for the third try. From the kick off Pinner attacked from their own 22 getting the ball to left wing Fred Riley who cut inside the defence but his final pass was adjudged to be forwards. With five minutes to go to half-time Pinner again fielded a desperate Uxbridge kick-out. A good break by right-wing Niall Curran found fly –half Chris Hall on hand to score under the posts. Jepsen converted to bring the score to 24 – 0 at the interval.
With Pinner now playing down the slope the next score wasn’t long in coming. A powerful run through the middle by replacement centre John Petrella took the play deep in the Uxbridge half. The ball was quickly re-cycled and a deft chip over the defence by fly-half Hall enabled captain and hooker Aaron Nicholas to score. Riley added the points. Pinner were soon back in the Uxbridge 22. A driving ruck near the line enabled prop Neill king to gather and dive over for try number seven. With the score now at 41 – 0 Pinner realised that moving the ball through the backs would bring more tries. Once again the home side’s kick out failed to find touch. Rapid movement along the line put winger Curran over in the corner. Straight from the kick-off Pinner brought the ball back to the half-way line for open-side flanker Dan Smith to run 50 m shrugging off several tackles and then out pacing the cover to score under the posts. With still the final quarter left Pinner became complacent and Uxbridge mounted a spirited effort to stay in the game. But with less than 10 minutes left Pinner stepped up a gear and James O’Brien added try number ten. Finally . with everyone waiting for the final whistle scum-half Jepsen ran round the exhausted home defence to score under the posts. He converted his own try to give a final score of 65 – 0.
For the first time in a few years Pinner will host two home matches at Hatch End next Saturday. The 1st XV play London French whilst the Pelicans host Fullerians IVth .
With over a hundred plus visiting players today, at Pinner Rugby Club, it was all hands on deck to provide a warm Pinner welcome to all. Even some of our committee members were at the club today, to see how the minis do a Sunday! One made a comment that maybe the U11/U12s could show the first team a thing or two!
Today at Pinner Rugby club we hosted over 100 children playing rugby in the glorious spring sunshine. Chess Valley RFC brought their tag teams (U6 – U8), U9s and U10s to play some great games. Initially the teams joined together for a fun training session and then matches were played. Great fun was had by all.
The Pinner U12s played Barnes RFC and Teddington RFC in the U12s Middlesex Tournament. During the first match – Teddington v Barnes – Barnes played a strong game and won by 40 – 7. Barnes scored 6 tries and converted all but 1! Teddington scored 1 try with a conversion.
Pinner then played Teddington RFC. It was a close match but eventually Pinner stormed through to win 19 – 12. Joseph Holden, Reece Connolly and Luke Sealby all scored tries and 2 tries were converted by Joseph. Ciara Evans was spotted by the referee and congratulated for her fantastic tackling. Pinner’s scrums were strong and they won the ball on most occasions.
The final match between Pinner and Barnes was a different story. This started with both teams looking fairly equal, however Pinner, who were tired after playing the previous game, found a rested Barnes were just too strong overall. Barnes RFC won 0 – 26 scoring 4 tries with 3 conversions.
The referee spoke highly of the excellent sporting attitude of Pinner players, on and off the pitch. All the players put in a fantastic effort throughout the matches and some brilliant rugby played.
To see the images from this morning please go to
Sunday saw a top of the table clash between Pinner U14s and Twickenham U14s with both teams knowing a win would put daylight between them. The conditions were excellent for rugby with the pitch soft under foot after all the recent rain.
Both teams started strongly, with fearless tackling and aggressive challenges at the breakdown and most of the game being played in the middle of the park.
The breakthrough came after six minutes when Pinner recycled clean ball from the breakdown and the ball was spun wide to the left giving Ben Stone a clear run in to score the first try half way between the posts and the touchline. The metronomic boot, now with a new kicking tee, of Freddie Hart added the conversion, 7 nil Pinner.
Buoyed by the try Pinner gathered the restart and worked their way back to the half way line with Twickenham working hard at the breakdown to turn over the ball. After some strong work from the Pinner pack the ball was again passed down the Pinner back line to Kai Gordon who ran in under the posts having broken a couple of tackles on the way. An easy conversion for Freddie and Pinner were ahead 14 nil.
The second try broke Twickenham’s resistance and Pinner started to dominate the game in all areas and it wasn’t long before try number three was scored. Pinner pack again recycled clean ball for scrumhalf Louis George to run down the blind side to score wide out near the left touchline. Unfortunately Freddie was unable to added the extras. Pinner 19 Twickenham 0.
An excellent catch from the restart by Charlie Gascoine set Pinner romping forward again. It took three defenders to bring Charlie down close to half way and out of the pursuing ruck appeared Joseph Burling with the ball. He set off on a jinking run dodging two or three tackles leaving him one on one with the fullback who surrendered and let Joseph score Pinner’s fourth and bonus point try under the post to which Freddie added the conversion. Pinner were now 26 ahead as we headed for half time.
However, Pinner weren’t finished there. Charlie again took a clean catch from the restart this time shipping the ball outside him where it eventually arrived in Kai’s arms and he set off with his after burners blazing running around the outside of the Twickenham players scoring closed to the posts. Unusually, Freddie missed a relatively simple opportunity to add the further two points and at half time Pinner were leading 31-0.
The second half was a lot tougher with Pinner making substitutions to give every player some game time and Twickenham starting to give their bigger boys more of the ball in an attempt to make ground against a Pinner defence which resolutely stayed strong with a ‘you shall not pass’ attitude we have come to see and expect from the boys in the past two seasons.
Pinner managed two more tries in the second half both from strong runs by Kai but only one was converted and the final score was 43-0 against a side the boys had expected to give them more of a game than they did.
The win moves Pinner 5 points ahead of Bishop Stortford and 6 points ahead of Twickenham, who both have a game in hand over our boys, giving them potentially 10 points each from their final 2 games. However, this will be irrelevant if Pinner can achieve a bonus point win against Saracens B on 23 March as they will be promoted with 25 points.
|1||Pinner and Grammarians||5||4||0||1||4||20|
|2||Bishop’s Stortford B||4||3||0||1||3||15|
Two strange decisions by the referee cost P&G’s 14 point and a much needed win away to Old Grammarians of Tottenham. The first was after 25 minutes of the first half when he gave a penalty for an offence in a ruck 5m from the visitor’s line. He converted this to a penalty try under the posts. The law requires that there would have been a high probability of a try had the offence not been committed. Not even the home supporters were convinced that this would have been the case. The second decision was to allow the second half to run on for over 50 minutes, normally 40 minutes per half, and again those on the touch line could not remember ten minutes of stoppages or injuries. Old Grammarians scored their second and decisive try which they converted to sneak the game 17 – 13.
The first half started with the home side kicking with the wind but against the slope. They were soon awarded a penalty, the first of a multitude given against both sides, to take a 3 – 0 lead. Pinner were having difficulties in adjusting to the slope of the pitch and the rather heavy and ponderous O G’s pack. Yet another penalty on the P&G 22 for off-side was missed in front of the posts. Pinner now began to get their act together and mounted a series of pick and drive attacks which brought them into the home 22. Winning another ruck scrum-half Sam Heath found centre Ollie Blazey to fee is co-centre Richard Southam who shrugged of a few tackles to score in the corner. The conversion was unsuccessful but P&G’s had a 5 – 3 lead. Then came the penalty try to put the home side 10 – 5 up. Pinner continued to threaten for the rest of the half with strong attacks through the centre but did not take advantage of getting the ball wide where their wingers would have out-paced the defence. O G’s were forced to defend and it was Pinner’s turn to be awarded penalties which took them in range of the goal line. With half-time over due they opted to kick at goal and Fred Riley stepped up to take the 3 points to bring the interval score to 10 – 8 to O G’s.
Pinner kicked off up the slope but with the wind. The kick went deep into the home 22 where the defenders made a mess of things. P&G’s won a turn-over at the resulting ruck. The ball was quickly fed along the backs and centre Ollie Blazey scored out on the right. The conversion was unsuccessful but the visitors had a 13 – 10 lead. Pinner continued to look threatening but didn’t use the wind enough to get often into the home 22. An injury to no. 8 Andy Alexander reduce the power of the pick and drives and the heavier O G’s pack was gaining momentum in the set scrums and mauls. Pinner had a possible third try disallowed but the game never really flowed due to the constant awarding of penalties and free kicks. With full-time past, there was little injury time to add on according to touch-line watches, O G’s mounted a series of drives with the referee giving yet more penalties. From the last one with Pinner retreating O G’s dived over for the final conclusive converted try to snatch victory 17 – 13. The eight club Herts- Middx Div 3 now goes into an enforced period without competitive matched until 11th January.
On Sunday the 15th December Pinner RFC mini and youth section, carried out a fun training session at their club on Shaftsbury playing fields, Hatch End. After a short contact training session two teams were formed and a well committed game took place with plenty of great tackles and some superb running play, all cheered on by the parents from across the age groups who had come outside to cheer on the teams, all agreed that they played with great confidence and skill.
After the final whistle blew the players had a great surprise when they we joined at the club for photographs and signatures by Saracens prop NICK AUTERAC, the players all enjoyed being up close to a Saracens player. Everyone moved to the changing rooms and after a wash and a quick change into clean clothes they entered the clubhouse to see it had been transformed by the parents into a Christmas party room, with decorations, crackers, music and party food all the children sat down to a fun noisy lunch. But then another special visitor arrived this time it was Father Christmas. At Pinner RFC we have a tradition at Christmas the players donate a Christmas present for a boy or girl who is less fortunate than themselves so Father Christmas collected the presents to be delivered to the children’s wards at local hospitals.
So that was the first half of a great season finished, we have seen our team numbers increasing and a great family club developing, we are always after recruiting new players to join all our teams from u6 through u15, we are also looking for people to volunteer who may be able to help with coaching or sponsorship interested please call Paul on 07917088802.
Pinner and Grammarians RFC U14s travelled to Tring on Sunday, knowing only a win with a try bonus point would get their season back on track after losing in the league game 2 weeks ago at Bishop Stortford.
The game was played in ideal conditions for running rugby. Pinner kicked off and a good follow up contained Tring in their own half. Both sides fought hard for the ball and the first try came from Kai Gordon for Pinner using his strength and pace to beat a number of Tring defenders down the right wing to touch down under the posts to give Freddie Hart and easy conversion and Pinner a nil-7 lead.
The lead was held for long as Tring put pressure on Pinner and after a couple of scrappy break downs and some weak tackling Ting scored a try close to Pinner’s right touchline. Trings kicker made a brave effort but the ball fell short leaving the score 5-7 in Pinner’s favour.
Following some further close rugby with both sides threatening each others try line, some great rucking by the Pinner forwards allowed the backs to ship the ball to outside centre Ryan Healy who burst a couple of tackles to score under the post giving Freddie another easy conversion, 5-14 to Pinner which remained the score at half time.
Tring kicked off the second half and were immediately put under pressure by an ever dominant Pinner team who were beginning to control the game in all areas and it wasn’t long before Kai burst a number of tackles down the right wing to score his second and Pinners third try of the game under the post. Freddie Hart, now minus his favourite kicking tee, duly converted putting Pinner in to a commanding 5-21 lead.
It wasn’t long until the Pinner got the fourth and bonus point try when Ryan again used his strength to burst past the Tring defence and score a try under the posts, which Freddie, still minus his favourite kicking tee, duly converted, 5-28 to Pinner.
Charlie Gascoine, playing back in his favoured position of number 8, added a fifth try for Pinner when he ripped the ball from a Tring attacker during a maul between the half way and their 10 metre line and burst down the left wing beating the winger and full back to crash over near the corner flag. Freddie, now no longer caring about what he kicked the ball off, slotted the long range conversion to make it 5-35 to Pinner.
Pinner taking more confidence took the game to Tring who were now visibly losing their confidence and discipline. Pinner looked to have scored their sixth try when Taylor Goodman powered over the Tring try line driving two Tring defenders with him only for the referee to rule the ball held up, no try, but as Taylor had driven over the Tring line, so Pinner had the put in to a 22 scrum.
With the game being completely dominated by Pinner at this stage and with about 5 minutes left on the clock Pinner held the a scrum and then drove Trings back the Pinner pack quickly worked the ball to the back of the scrum where Charlie picked up at the back and ran uncontested over the Tring try line to give Freddie another difficult conversion attempt which fell just short [maybe he was still missing that kicking tee] leaving the final score at 5-40 to Pinner.
The boys have given themselves a massive boost with only two league games, both at home, left of the season to get promoted two seasons in a row.
|1||Pinner and Grammarians||4||2||0||0||69||5||1||0||1||50||32||3||0||1||119||37||82||3||15|
|2||Bishop’s Stortford B||4||2||0||0||49||22||1||0||1||62||31||3||0||1||111||53||58||3||15|
Expectations were high for P&G’s encounter with local rivals Watford. A bonus point win would see Pinner go to the top of Herts / Middlesex Division 3. The home side started well enough but with many changes caused by injuries in the previous match early team coordination left much to be desired. Three penalties in the first quarter of an hour inside the P&G 10 meter area were all kicked by the Watford fly-half posting an early 9- 0 lead. The visitors were now full of confidence and running the ball with some purpose. Another penalty in front of the posts was quickly taken whilst P&G’s were not alert. A try resulted on the left and the extra points added. Pinner’s cause was not helped when their powerful no 8 Andy Alexander was yellow carded for holding back an opponent. A Pinner attack broke down and Watford fly-hacked ahead getting the luck of the bounce to score their second converted try. On the half hour Pinner were awarded only their second penalty which was slotted over by Fred Riley. With half-time approaching the powerful Watford forwards set up a driving maul to score the third try and make the score 30 – 3 at the break.
Pinner started the second half with much more purpose and greater coordination. The teams appeared evenly match with the home side dominating much of the play. However injuries to key players again caused disruption. There was no score for nearly half an hour when Fred Riley kicked his second penalty. This gave the home side more confidence and several promising attacks developed. In one of these P&G lost the ball in the Watford 22 and the visitors broke away at speed with support to get their fourth and bonus point try. The coordination of their backs and drills of their forwards showed the benefit of being able to train under lights the opportunity for which the home side is denied. Pinner had their best chance to add points when winger Fred Riley intercept a Watford pass in his own 22 and sprinted deep into visitors half before being caught by an even faster defender. With this chance gone the visitors great fluency resulted in a further final try to bring a the score to 44 – 6 to the great disappointment of the home crowd.
Pinner, visiting promotion rivals Old Isleworthians on Saturday suffered another frustrating afternoon. In the last two seasons P&G’s were pipped in the closing minutes of their matches. This time a serious injury to prop forward Lee O’Callaghan disrupted the match for 50 minutes. Early exchanges were fairly even but with the home side, playing with the slope, having more territorial advantage. Neither side generated any scoring opportunity other than a missed penalty by the O I’s fly half. After about 15 minutes a scrum on the half way line collapsed and O’Callaghan appeared to have damaged his knee. With the replacement on the referee allowed play to continue even before the P&G player could be help to the touch-line. A few minutes later the player went into shock and the game was suspended whilst first of all the paramedics arrive and then an ambulance. Play was held up for 50 minutes and with the light failing the referee decided that he would abandon the first half having only played 19 minutes and restart the match with the second half. P&G’s were unhappy with this decision and many on the touch-line doubted if the game could be finished safely.
In the second half P&G’s played with great spirit and no little endeavour spending more time in their opponents half. Pinner had a chance of a score but rejected a kick at goal. Attacks by both sides were easily nullified by strong defence. Several powerful drives by the forwards eventually broke down but kicks from deep by full back Chris Jepsen often looked promising but many went into touch on the small pitch. With about 15 minutes to go Old Isleworthians were awarded a penalty on the P&G 22 and this time their fly-half made no mistake. This appeared to be going to be the only score. The P&G fly-half Chris Hall, attacking on the right chipped over the defence to produce a possible scoring chance. He was illegally held back and after saying a few words with the offending player he, and not the guilty man, was yellow carded by the referee whose general management of the game left much to be desired. All now looked up for the visitors but Chris Hall was to have the final say. With minutes to go and in almost darkness Pinner won a line-out on the O I’s 10 metre line. Scrum half Sam Heath got the ball to Hall, now back on the field, who drop-kicked magnificent goal from 35 metres to equal the score at 3 all. Probably a fair result in the circumstances.
Pinner travelled away to Fullerians for their second league match of the season. Pinner started the day with a strong squad size of 16 players, however by the time we were at Fullerians we were at a squad size of 13 due to sickness and family commitments. Pinner was not put off by the fact that they would have to field their 13 players against Fullerians 15 and 6 subs. The game started with both teams trying to assert themselves with some great tackles and running support play. Suddenly a break in the play and a powerful run from the half way line by Josh Parker Brice saw him tackled 5 meters from the try line his momentum took him over with a stretching twisting score the first score to Pinner with no conversion. Fullerians were pushing forward and trying to get onto the scoreboard not helped by handling errors from both sides. Pinner got another break leading to the second try courtesy of Sam Alexander and his huge physical handoffs. Fullerians were not going to give this game up easily and scored a try to end the first half setting the score at 5 – 10 in Pinners favour.
The second half started with the same vigour and determination from both sides the first score of the half went to James Nye, picking up the ball moving at pace, no one got near him as he strode half the pitch to score under the posts. In response Fullerians confidence grew and they worked hard to score a try from a scrum close to Pinners try line using the overlap they had due to team numbers. A few more knock ons and hard tackles from both sides and once again a darting run from James Nye to score his second try of the game. He was not content with scoring two tries, James Nye went on to score a third try all were converted. Pressure came from both sides but Pinner managed to keep the upper hand, helped by lots of encouragement from the parents. The game was coming to a close when just as we thought it was over, Sam Alexander crashed through the opposition with his now signature handoffs, to score his second try which was converted, then the final whistle blew. A great team performance brilliant support and attack play from all of the Pinner RFC boys making this very much a team victory and well-deserved win for Pinner.
The final score Fullerians 12 Pinner 38.
A big thank you as always goes to the coaches Paul and Tom for their guidance and dedication and the parents who made the trip to support the team.
Report Lloyd Alexander
Festival at London Scottish 17th November 2013 U12s.
It is customary for Pinner to make a slow start at festivals and usually use the first game to find their feet, especially as many of the players had not played together as a team. The first game reflected this; and Pinner were not playing at their best. Pinner lost the 1st scrum and from some excellent forward play London Scottish took the lead. From the restart, Pinner became frustrated with themselves, missing tackles and making passes that didn’t go to hand. A change in fortunes came when they upped their game and begun to play with more conviction. Despite some great tackling, Ciara Evans in particular, combined with some fantastic attacking moves, Pinner were unable to score. London Scottish dominated the game. The final score was 47 – 0 to London Scottish.
The second game against Harringey Rhinos was totally different and Pinner came back with vengeance. They passed the ball with precision allowing players to move the ball to all areas of the pitch. The scrum started to gel and began to dominate allowing the scrum half time on the ball and deliver some great passes which widened the play from side to side. All the children played as a team and held their positions well. The tackles kept coming and we had developed line out strategies which, again helped with ball retention. The increase in positive movement and perfect passing meant that Pinner were now committed to the win, the try line began to be peppered with Pinner players who pushed the score along throughout the game; Josh Maloney and Manitou Lee scored fantastic individual tries and Luke Selby added to the score with two further tries. Haringey Rhinos came back with a try but Pinner remained strong. The final result was 28 – 5 to Pinner. Max Fullerton converted all tries in true Max style.
Callum St John played at number 10 and finally realised why he was put at number 10. He pushed Pinner deep into the oppositions half on many occasions with tremendous kicking and with Reece Connolly making monumental runs chasing the ball covered the length of the pitch several times! Majeed Muhammad again, made some great interceptions, followed these with terrific passes his team players. Ibrahim Khurshid continued with his fearless tackling and in the scrum his role as second row allowed Pinner to dictate the play. Guru Patel supported his team players with some great passes, which lead to Pinner scoring tries. Jameel Seidel tackled hard as always, preventing the opposition from reaching the try line often completing a succession of two and three tackles in seconds.
Harry Shaw made some outstanding interceptions and with various determined runs changed the oppositions game plan, there passing was somewhat shaken and reverted to pop passes instead of the free flowing play they used in the first half. Mike Murphy and Joseph Holden helped balance the team with overall stamina and experience of playing in previous festivals; outstanding play from both.
Well done to all of the team who played some terrific rugby. A big thanks to the coaches Callum, Paul and Richard who supported them so well and of course the parents who supported the team.
Images from the festival are located in the gallery section – this is password protected
We look forward to the second leg of the competition on 8th Dec 2013 at Ealing Trailfinders, look out for emails and respond as soon as possible please.
Pinner RFC will be holding a schools Rugby fun day on Saturday 30th November at the Pinner Rugby Club, Shaftesbury Playing Fields,
Grimsdyke Rd, Pinner, Middlesex HA5 4PW. Where a number of local schools will be attending – years 6 to 9.
Hatfield were the visitors at the Shaftsbury Playing Fields on Saturday in a revived grudge match which promised a good old fashioned arm wrestle. The rain eased off just in time for the kick-off and allowed fans to gather from both teams.
Pinner & Grammarians kicked off and immediately put pressure on the visitors by regaining possession and surging into the Hatfield twenty-two. The opening exchanges were very physical with both forward packs looking to stamp their authority on the game. The P&G forwards and backs combined well to retain possession and winger Chris Hall was able to find enough space out wide to sprint down the touch line for the games first try. The conversion was missed, but the early score put the home side in the driving seat and the pressure continued with Pinner & Grammarians able to again push up field into the Hatfield half.
The Pinner & Grammarians offloading game was proving very difficult to stifle and the flowing play exposed a couple of cracks in the Hatfield defence and Dan Muckley jinked his way through the attempted tackles to dot down for another Pinner & Grammarians try. Freddie Riley missed the conversion but found the mark minutes later with a penalty kick to put the score at 13-0.
Hatfield showed great determination to get themselves back into the game and sustained the pressure through forward drives and direct backs play to find themselves on the P&G try line. The home side defended bravely and kept them out for phase after phase until Hatfield found the numbers to beat the scrambling defenders for captain Leon Ellis to score in the corner, with Conan Hoey adding the extras from the kicking tee.
The second half began with just as much intensity as the first, with Pinner & Grammarians desperate to put the game beyond the reach of the visitors. Some good passing from fly-half Fraser Allan and impressive offloads from full-back Chris Jepsen and Riley on the wing, combined with the industrious work rate of flanker Dan Smith put P&G on the front foot deep in Hatfield territory. The home side penetrated the defence on numerous occasions only to be judged the ball had been held up over the line. Eventually however the ball was worked wide to Kit Smith who finished well and secured another five points, the conversion came back off the upright, but again Riley found his groove to slot another penalty moments later.
Another try from Chris Hall in the corner of the pitch sealed the four try bonus point for the home side but it was clear the unrelenting pace had taken its toll on the Pinner & Grammarians forwards. Although P&G had dominated all game, the closing stages saw Hatfield make a last ditch effort take them on a rampaging run up field and using big runners they pushed towards the try line, only for the referee to blow the whistle for a full time score of 26-7.
A spirited display from both teams and possibly more excitement for the spectators than had been seen at Twickenham that day… although not quite as entertaining as the P&G RFC Pop-Idol competition that evening.
In the shadow of Saracens’ Allianz Park stadium in Barnet, Pinner & Grammarians took on Mill Hill in the driving rain. Spectators braved the wind and rain in conditions which would have sent viewers rushing back to the club house, had it not been for the tense match on show.
Both sides have tasted victory in recent weeks and wanted to continue that run of form. However the relentless rain did not allow either team to exhibit their preferred styles of rugby, keeping the play tight and the ball safe was going to be the order of the day.
P&G started the match strongly and pushed Mill Hill deep into their own half with a driving maul, and set up camp on their five metre line. The home side rallied strongly, and despite the barrage of big ball carriers from the visitors they were able to keep the P&G attacks at bay. The defence’s hard work was rewarded with a penalty offence at the break-down allowing Mill Hill to clear their lines with a kick to touch.
The rest of the first half continued to entertain the dedicated crowds with hard play from both sides, and fewer unforced errors than could have been expected with the ball growing increasingly slippery. Mill Hill had a couple of shots at the posts going astray with the wind no doubt playing a factor, and the half ended with nothing on the scoreboard.
The Second half started with the same energy as the first with good solid play, with P&G able to string phase after phase together and keep the pressure applied, only to be denied by a knock-on or the referee’s whistle. The visitors added some fresh legs to the field and it may just have been what was needed, as for the first time in the game it looked like Mill Hill were starting to crack under the strain. After some hard graft from the P&G forwards the ball was spun out wide to Andrew Alexander who cut a great running line, allowing the big Number 8 to run in the game’s first try from twenty metres out. Chris Jepsen added the additional two points from the conversion to put the score at 7-0.
Mill Hill surged back into the game with several big scrums and brave play but were never able to penetrate the P&G defence. The game finished in the same manner that it started, with both teams fighting hard for possession and crunching tackles coming in from all angles, but by the eightieth minute both sides were spent. The referee blew up for full time on a game which displayed hard work, grit and enthusiasm in abundance, which was not reflected in the score line.
Pelicans run riot against a spirited SODOM
With no 1st XV league match this week it was the turn of Pinner’s Pelicans to play hosts to SODOM RFC from Greenford. Many of the visitors were new to rugby as SODOM lost many players during the summer when a group left to form Hanwell RFC.
SODOM’s bulky forwards made an early impression in mauls pinning P&G’s in their own 22 but once the ball was with the home backs a try was inevitable. A move from their own half centre Graeme Searle and full-back Chris Jepson interchanged several passes before Jepson touched down. Forward play was evenly balanced with SODOM confining their attacks in this area. With only 10 minutes gone Jepson and Searle again combined to run the ball from defence with Searle scoring near the posts and Jepson converting to give the Pelicans at 12 – 0 lead. Pinner’s play now became over confident resulting in some sloppy defending allowing the visitor’s captain Emmanuel Chukwueke to twist and side-step to score under the posts. John Meharry added the two points. This snapped Pinner into action with backs and forwards moving the ball at will. SODOM were forced to defend and a panic kick-oout only found centre Don Williams who once more had Jepson in support to get try number three. The pattern of play was now established with Pelicans running the ball from deep once SODOM pressure had been overturned. Three more tries came before half-time, two from Searle and one from fly-half Chris Hall. However SODOM refused to give up and with half-time approaching they got the ball into the home 22. Their forwards drove on, over the line for John Meharry to score to give Pelicans a 36 – 12 lead.
The second half was rather a one-sided affair with Pelicans running in tries at regular intervals. The SODOM players continue to defend and did not give up but they had little answer to the Pinner backs who attacked at every opportunity. Seven more tries were added to bring the final score to 77 -12. Graeme Searle had a total of 5 tries, Jepson 3 Hall 3 with Lane, Gordon and Alex on each.