QUINS CUP – “CROSS POOL” FRIENDLY
Warlingham 2nd XV 34 Guildford Colts 2nd XV 19
SUNDAY 28th JANUARY 2024
Last Sunday saw the Colts 2nd XV travel across the county for a “cross pool” friendly in the Quins Cup. Although there were no points on the line, the 2nd XV were eager to follow up their victory against Sutton & Epson and keep some momentum going. Whilst less windy than last week, there was still a strong wind to contend with. Guildford, backing their defensive set, opted to take on not only the wind, but also the slope and the low sunshine in the first half. Initially, this appeared to be a good decision with Guildford playing and pressing hard in the Warlingham half. However, a couple of uncharacteristic mistakes took momentum away from the team and they were soon defending their own line and try as they might, they could not escape.
A scoreline of 27-0 to Warlingham at half time would seem to indicate a one sided affair, however the defence was frequently resolute with Warlingham held up over the line twice, as well as numerous occasions dropping the ball in “the red zone” due to ferocious tackling.
Surveying the scene and the increasingly deteriorating muddy pitch (a thank you once again to Adrian and the team for giving us such fine pitches at Broadwater), the objective was set to as a minimum “win the half”. Even with a reduced bench due to injuries and a number of boys being selected for a 1st XV, which was annoyingly cancelled by the opposition on Sunday morning, the boys on the park roused themselves and put on a strong display with three unanswered tries from continued pressure.
The first try came from the quick thinking of Lochy Ellis-Jones, who, seeing the press from the white and blue Warlingham defence, deftly grubbered a kick through and touched down over the try line before converting his own try. The second try again came from quick thinking and communication between Ellis-Jones and scrum half turned winger James Richardson. A carefully weighted crossfield pass/kick was collected by James who used his feet to tie up two defenders before popping the ball from the floor to Ted Scott, who scored in the corner. Conversion missed.
Not wishing to be left out of the action, the forwards scored a well worked try from the lineout. Having previously engaged Warlingham’s pack through use of the driving maul, the Guildford line appeared to be ready to do so once more. This clever ruse was then used as cover for a quick throw to captain Oliver James at the front of the line, who crashed over for a score, trailing bodies with him. This time the conversion from the corner was good.
Guildford and Warlingham traded yellow cards for deliberate knock-ons and whilst down to 14, Guildford conceded a late try from Warlingham. Final score, Warlingham 34 Guildford 19, but the 2nd XV remained buoyed by their second half exploits and look forward to taking that energy and commitment into their next game away against Bracknell.