A worthwhile journey from Essex for Rochford Hundred as fly half Sam Cappaert kicked a penalty in injury time from OAs’ thirty metre space to adjust the score from 21: 19 in the home side’s favour to a single-point winning margin. With a conversion and three penalties he was outstanding in a close nail-biter of a match where the lead changed hands three times in the final ten minutes.
All this when Rochford looked clear and away at half time as a 7-13 lead was increased by a further penalty as the Old Albanian tight head prop was red carded for an offence as a scrum collapsed. As a result, OAs came out for the second half determined not to make the lack of numbers count and fought back to 18: 16 with a try by Kaz Henderson and two Dan Watt penalty kicks to lead into the tumultuous last ten minutes.
Up until then the game had resembled the Lions tour tests with an excess of kicking for position by both sides with the tedium relieved by a Damien Brambly try for Rochford in the 21st minute. For the home side there has to come a time to agree that a resolute approach to the game is wasted if it produces no more than a losing bonus point, especially in a home fixture. Penalties were needlessly given away and with them hard fought-for positions.
- Alex Noot, 14 Kaz Henderson, 13 Dan Watt, 12 Nico Defeo, 11. Sam Jones, !0. Gregory Lound, 9. Elliott McPhun, 8 Chris West, 7. Angus Southon, 6. Ash Illston, 4. Rhys Verley, 3. Harry Samuel, 2. Tom Petty, 1 Matthew Harris.
- Mark Billings, 14. Damien Brambley, 13. Sonny Gay, 12, Matthew Needham, 11. Jake Spivey, 10 Sam Cappaert, 9. Ricki Gould 8. Harry Hudson, 7 Craig Strachan, 6. James Kellard, 5. Sam Fombo, 4. Chris Shields, 3. Aston Bevans-Royston, 2. Robert Gardner, 1. Joshua Ridgeway.