Cam overcome OTs to record another 5 pointer
Despite a performance which at times still lacked discipline and control the black and ambers eventually show their class in beating a competitive OTs XV by 6 tries to 2
So Cam returned to Watchetts for only their second home game of the season with Old Tonbridgians as the visitors a side who last season were one of a very to dent the black and ambers home record however this time, after quite a tight first half the Cam just had too much for the visitors to eventually triumph by 6 tries to 2.
The game was played in grey, breezy conditions with Cam, playing towards the clubhouse,soon on the attack and we saw Oyoni cross the line only for him to lose the ball but the visitors were penalised and HT, playing 10 in the absence of Smarty and TommyD, claimed the 3 points with just 5 mins on the clock.
The next period saw OTs miss a regulation penalty in one of their infrequent visits to the Cam half, but Cam were soon attacking again and a good move saw Ben Bowen
almost away but pulled back when he put a foot on the whitewash.
At this stage it was all Cam but they were unable to complete the opportunities they created with poor handling or decision making - but after a great lineout steal by Voighty and a really physical run by young hooker Mua they crossed the tryline yet again only to lose the ball in contact.
Although the supporters were ruing these two missed opportunities it seemed to have little effect on the players who continued to attempt to play their expansive rugby and with about 20mins played we again saw a move involving Hoff, Nick, Josh and TommyA take play to the visitors line only for the ball to be held up however good work at the base of the 5m scrum saw Ben Bowen
put Oyoni over in the corner.
To their credit the visitors continued to work extremely hard in defence and on the occasions that they did get some ball they looked dangerous and on 35 mins they brought the gap down to a single point with a converted try.
This however seemed to focus the minds of the black and ambers who, for the remainder of the half camped in the red zone and a scrum against the head created space for HT to race over for a try which he then converted giving a half time score of 15-7.
The second period started with OTs seeing some possession and only good last ditch defence held them up over the line. This really did wake up the home side as they won the 5m scrum against the head and decided to run the ball from their own line and reached halfway where they quickly recycled the ball and great vision by Ben Bowen
was followed by some magical rugby when Hughsey, at that moment in the centre showed great skill to draw 2 defenders before an exquisite flick to Mac outside saw the the #8 set off on a charge - he then threw 2 outrageous dummies and stepped as if he was on Strictly and dotted down under the posts to complete a brilliant passage of play.
By this stage Cam were showing their pace and skill and only resolute defence by the visitors was managing to keep the score down but on 60 mins during a rare visit to the Cam 22 we saw Ben Bowen
strip/steal the ball deep in his 22 and outrun the opposition to dot down for the try which HT converted and the bonus point was claimed.
As often happens concentration levels dropped momentarily allowing OTs to double their score but this was the last time they were going to trouble Mr Doody and his scoreboard.
We soon saw more end to end play when Tommy A marked a kick and then swiftly moved the ball to JoshL whose pace and physicality had caused OTs real problems all afternoon and when he was held on halfway the ball reached Jamie Taylor
who was brought down just a metre short but the the official adjudged that there has been some skullduggery by the defence and had no hesitation in awarding a penalty try.
By now Cam were really on top as the OTs tackle count grew and with the Cam scrum going well and it was no surprise the final score came when a good pick up by Mac at the base saw The Warrior take the ball on before feeding lock Tom Keith
who unselfishly put Jamie Taylor
in at the corner and with HT making a superb conversion on 77 mins that concluded the scoring for the afternoon.
Overall this was a much better performance by the black and ambers when for long periods they played some outstanding rugby but they sometimes forget that discipline, a good set piece and strong defence are required to earn the right to play their wide expansive game.
So the front row of Nick,Mua and Steve who between them cannot even muster 2 seasons at this level and who, in the first half experienced some difficulties with the official, stuck to the job amazingly well and it was great to see that they pinched more opposition ball in that one game than we have in total this season and in addition they will have learned so much - but what they also bring to the side is their willingness to run with ball in hand and today Mua in particular had a stormer in that department.
Well what can we say about the locks Sam and Hoff back in harness for the first time this season - Hoff playing with a broken nose as a result of last weeks battle and Voighty managing to make important lineout steals - they just bring something very solid and secure to the pack and with Tom Keith
on the bench and the guys in the 2s Risey is currently blessed with locks.
Today the stars for me were the backrow - The Warrior is getting back to his best and we saw many crunching tackles from him together with some really aggressive running, Hughsey appeared all over the park working hard in attack and defence and his flick pass to Mac was magic. While Mac's progress this season has been impressive with his ball retention and his ability to link with the rest of the team so much improved.
It has also been great to see Ben Bowen
return this season and after an initial fight to get into the 1s it is clear after a couple of games he has no intention of letting his spot go again and as a result he had yet another outstanding game adding pace at the breakdown and also vision in attack.
HT had a good game at 10, particularly considering that last week he played 14 and some of his place kicking was excellent as was his try when he spotted a gap and backed himself to get over.
The centres Joe and Rory had quieter games overall - they obviously decided to give the ball early to our very pacey and physical wingers Oyoni and JoshL who both caused panic in the opposition defence whenever they got the ball and with TommyA safe and secure at the back together with good performances from the replacements, Tom, Jamie and Louie this was another good afternoon for Risey and his coaching team.
Next week the lads will have a week off as its the first round of the National Cup competition and Cam have a bye.
And Finally what a result from CG - after their mauling last week the C&Ws bounced back and beat league leaders Sinners, claiming a try bonus into the bargain - well for at least a week the world will be Cherry and White for some of us anyway!!!.