Cam put record straight with 6 try win over Exiles
Cam put record straight with 6 try win over Exiles
With visitors London Exiles as the only team to have beaten the black and ambers in the League this season the temperature was always going to rise despite the cold and damp conditions but after a pretty even first quarter Cam got to grips with a very fiesty opposition who had certainly come to fight, to win comfortably in the end scoring 6 tries in the process.
The first 10 mins saw both sides testing each other out and it became very clear that the Cam 8 had their opponents 'on toast' driving them back at almost every scrum – and this with Big Tom missing from the second row following his broken arm at OTs. However the ferocious tackling by Exiles, coupled with their array of unecessary cheap shots which continued throughout the game was causing the Cam attack some serious problems and on 12 mins the visitors took the lead with a well worked move from a scrum in the Cam 22.
To their credit Cam came straight back and winning the restart we saw HT almost through with the ball going forward 5m from the visitors line. A great drive saw the visiting #8 forced to touch dowwn over his goal line and when the following attacking 5m scrum was deliberately pulled down the ref had no hesitation in awarding a penalty try – so 7-5 after 17 mins.
The game, at this stage was still very scrappy with too many individual battles taking place but a great break by Oli saw big Nick charging towards the visitors line and only great defence stopped him from adding to the score.
In fact the visitors were the next on the scoreboard with a penalty after 25 mins but with both sides making too many errors and with both defences on top much of the next 20 mins was spent between the 22m lines but on 39 mins Cam won a 5m lineout and although the drive was stopped several times Mac eventually forced his way over for a try which was converted by Smarty.
Cam then took control when, from the restart, we saw Dyl and Mac charging into the visitors half and when they were awarded a penalty a beautiful kick by Smarty produced another lineout close to the visitors line and again Exiles had no answer to the drive which saw Big Sam claim the try on the stroke of half time for a score of 19-8.
The second half got off to an explosive start when good work receiving the kick saw Ash surge through the vistors defence and when he was stopped deep in the red zone the ball was moved quickly across field for Mac to cross for his second of the afternoon and with Smarty adding the extras the score had moved to 26-8 and the bonus point secured.
Although the game was increasingly being played in the Exiles half and despite them losing 3 players to the sin bin during the game, proceedings remained a tad scrappy but on 60 mins Cam added to their score when pressure on the Exiles line eventually saw Hughsey over in the corner.
At this time we then moved to uncontested scrums as the visitors ran out of front row players and of course this somewhat negated the great advantage that Cam had at scrum time but Exiles great defensive effort together with having to play 30 mins with 14 men eventually took its toll and another period of pressure at the clubhouse end saw scrum half Ben Bowen eventully dive over to claim the 6th try with Smarty again adding the extras.
Again from the restart we saw great hands by Cam moving the ball out wide eventually finding loose head prop Hasty (I used to be a winger) whose charge was followed by a delicate chip (what do they teach props these days!) and only a knock on saved another try so the game finished at 38-8.
Not the prettiest of games for the spectator largely due to the fierce defence of the Exiles often accompanied by dubious off the ball or late actions which clearly cost them with their 3 yellows.
Again this was a great result for the front 5 who put in another big shift with Hasty, Dyl and Nick becoming a formidable front 3 and Voighty probably playing his best rugby also having time to help Ben Harrison who had the massive task of stepping into Big Tom's boots.
Again the back row were outstanding with Mac just being Mac, here, there and everywhere, The Warrior was massive in attack and defence and Hughsey mixing physicality with pace and outstanding skills they are truly an awesome trio.
The halfback partnership worked much better this weekend as Ben and Smarty start to understand each other and Ben clearly is improving each time he plays at this level. We had another outstanding performance from Smarty as he improves his game management week on week, his kicking both from hand and tee were excellent and he even seems to be enjoying the physicality of defence a lot more than earlier in the season.
Well not much to be added about the Wright Bros who this week teamed up in the centre and both made many telling breaks using their pace and strength and the back 3 of TommyA, HT and Oyoni all played their parts in both attack and defence.
So next weekend is Surrey KO weekend with the 1s travelling to Cobham on Friday for a their floodlit game – ko 19.45, The 2s are away at Old Regatians and the 3s are at home playing Woking 2s ko 14.00.
Not often a paragraph just for the ref but remember the name Harvey Edwards – he was on an exchange from Devon, is not yet 18 and had an excellent good game.
In what was a potentially difficult game full of niggles and off the ball incidents he maintained good control, and I am sure he is destined for much bigger things – those of us with very long memories will remember encountering a very young Wayne Barnes on our travels in the National Leagues.
And Finally – well with their fate in the AW already decided before they played in the frozen North all focus is now on the return of the Premiership and this weekend's visit of Leicester to Castle Grim where the C&Ws will be looking to maintain their playoff position.
The pictures from the game are provided by Pete Gardner