Outstanding Cambo in 11 try Romp
This exciting Camberley side produce an outstanding performance to consolidate their position at the top.
So after a 3 week holiday break rugby returned to Watchetts on a cold January afternoon with the visit of mid table Andover. Things did not auger too well for the home side as the 1st team pitch was declared unplayable and so the game took place on the much smaller top pitch which was apparently going to impact the black and ambers wide and expansive game although player coach Ash before the game was confident that this would not trouble his side.
The game, which was sponsored by Chris Powell and his company SmartCyberSecurity based oddly enough in Andover, got off to an electric start as Cam returned the Andover defensive kick with interest and when the visitors were penalised on their 10m line the black and ambers were only prevented from scoring by a deliberate knock on which created a 5m lineout on the other side of the pitch from which a great catch and drive saw The Warrior split off and crash over for a try, converted by TommyD with just 4 mins played.
The next score came even quicker when, from the Andover restart, the ball was collected cleanly and moved out wide and a great line by Dyl saw him charge into the opposition 22 before a bit of basketball passing between Mac and HT saw HT cross for the second try of the afternoon on just 6 mins.
Again directly from the restart we saw an outrageous dummy by young prop Nick who then fed the ever present Dyl and when this move was halted in the opposition 22 the ball was quickly recycled and swift hands saw the ball reach Hughsey on the other flank and his speed and physicality was just too much for the opposition and with TommyD adding the extras the score had reached 19 points with just 9 mins on the clock.
At this time the visitors had not touched the ball except for the 3 kick offs but a mistake on the next restart saw them win a scrum and they, clearly remembering their disastrous strategy in the game earlier in the season, when they seemed to kick rather aimlessly to the Camberley back three this time around they decided that they would truck it up using their big forwards and after quite a period of pick and goes they were rewarded with a try on 19 mins to bring the gap down to 12 points.
However their success was very short lived as, from the Cam restart, Andover knocked on and with Oli reacting first to secure the ball he was able to feed Dyl who again was in the right place at the right time and he charged over from the 22 to score the bonus point try with just 21 mins played.
We then saw yet another example of the pace, skills and teamwork of this young black and amber side when the restart kick was collected by Hughsey who made good ground before setting the ball back and a great burst by The Warrior right through the heart of the visitors defence set up Oli for a touch down on 23 mins.
We then saw some more outstanding skills when again from a scrum on the Cam 10m line centre Rory broke through the middle supported by TommyA and Oyoni only to be called back for a forward pass. However from the next lineout we saw a beautifully delayed pass by Smarty release Oli and his pass to Rory saw the centre cross for Camberley's 6th try on just 27 mins.
Although there was no more scoring in the half we did witness the visitors scrum being pushed backwards, which after the rapid retreating the black and ambers had experienced in the first game, was a major turnaround and to their credit this became the norm for the rest of the game with the much vaunted Andover 8 finding themselves taking several backward steps at every subsequent scrum - a huge win for the black and amber pack and following their demolition of the Farnham pack in the previous game is yet another success for the coaching team.
This scrum dominance was clear at the beginning of the second half when another great scrum saw the ball turned over and an another aggressive run by Hughsey saw the ball recycled quickly and Oyoni crossing for try #7.
Following the restart scrumhalf TommyA was taken off following an injury to his jaw and despite the undoubted skills of HT who moved in from the wing this did somewhat slow the try scoring machine temporarily and with the visitors getting hold of the ball for some time the black and ambers were able to test out their defensive drills which seemed fine as the visitors could find no way through and on 68 mins we saw another score when a great break by Ash saw Hughsey over for his second of the afternoon this time Smarty added the extras.
Again from the restart TommyA was first to react to a dropped ball and scorched through a tired opposition into their 22 and several phases later we saw our other veteran Dan Harvey burrow his way over for a try, again converted by Smarty.
By this time Andover were pretty much overwhelmed and The Warrior crashed through the heart of their defence to take the ball, yet again, deep into the Andover half as the effort at scrum time was clearly taking its toll on the visitors.
In fact the next score was not long coming as a great arrow to Hughsey at the back by Dyl saw the Cam backs surge forward again for Oli to cross for another converted try.
The final try again came direct from the restart when big inroads were made in the visitors defence and another great run by Hughsey saw him pop the ball to fellow flanker The Warrior for the 11th and final try to round off an outstanding game for the black and ambers.
With a 3 week break and no training outside this was an exceptional performance by this exciting team - yes there were mistakes and some final passes didn't go to hand but such were the skills shown together with the pace at which they play the game it was pure joy to watch. This is clearly a squad who play their hearts out for each other and are prepared to learn and work hard on their weak areas , something clearly highlighted by, for example, the way they took it to the Andover eight who arrived at Watchetts with the reputation as the best scrummagers in the league and left with that somewhat in tatters.
This truly was a team performance with the tries pretty evenly split between forwards and backs but, as with the previous couple of games, it must be hats off to the forwards who have seriously toughened up their set piece game over the last couple of months without losing any of their mobility around the park.
So next week we are at home again, this time the visitors are Winchester the team, I believe, which actually kick started our improvement as a scrappy win there was followed by defeat at Exiles - ko normal January time 14.00.
And Finally - well its a tough day for anyone supporting the C&Ws as they, following the win over Sale last week, succumbed to a very late try at The Sinners and could only manage a lbp and although they still remain in 4th this was clearly an opportunity to consolidate that position, however they have already managed a fantastic turnaround this season under JA and still might stun SO'M at the end of the season!!
Pictures provided by Peter Gardner