Guildford Vets 12, Barnes Harrodian Vets 12 – 27th January 2018
“Remembering what its all about…..”
As we mature like a fine wine – our quality as a person suppresses our younger state and we look on life and situations with a deeper meaning- Saturday at Guildford RFC was one one of these days.
Following our win with a Friendly at Woking RFC the previous week with our BABA’s team (a classy bunch of lads who put on their boots only a handful of times each year), the Vets of Guildford RFC welcomed Barnes Harrodian Vets.
A Call to Arms for help with car parking due to 4 teams playing at Home was launched and the mighty BRIC kindly stepped up once more to ensure no mayhem happened on the day- THANKS SOO MUCH BRIC. Without his intelligent planning not all cars would have parked within the grounds and our Vets match would have been dashed/postponed. The only thing missing was SKY / TV trucks and Guildford would have been mistaken for a Premiership club with the vast number of players & supporters on site.
So the eagerly return game kicked off and ‘The Management’ were amazed how quickly our boys set out for revenge after our loss to Barnes at theirs in December. Within the first 15 minutes Axel took a loose kick and carrying a strained Hamstring decided to sprint 20 yards towards the posts (Welshy stared on in horror as he braced himself or the ‘Twang’ of Axel’s hamstring snapping) and offload to his ever present backs of Tommy and Battye who dived over the line between the posts. Scoops – keen to make amends for his miss in the previous game – smashed the ball though the posts and into Guildford Town this time.
Barnes were awoken by the score and became more verbal on the pitch as it dawned on them that this Guildford side weren’t dampened by the driving rain but were out for revenge and recognised that unless the visitors were careful this Guildford side would put a few points past them. The Guildford defence was tremendous and Barnes acknowledged this as they sent their battering back row forward into battle time and time again while The Management commended and congratulate the lads on a superb defence display again and again on all parts of the pitch.
However, the pressure ttold and Barnes eventually broke the deadlock after repeated attempts and it remained 7-7 into half time.
The second half was more of the same and both management teams were thrilled by the levels of skill on display from both teams in the conditions.
Guildford scored first in the second half when a great kick again by Playdoh put our lads into the Barnes 22. Master of the line out Turnsey made the right call in the weather and the forwards ploughed towards the line while the “dancing lightweights” (a forwards description of backs) ran in to lend their inconsiderable weight to until it got to within a few yards which allowed Axel to somehow come up with the ball and crash over the line. Happy Days and well deserved by the forwards. Playdoh – exhausted by becoming a token forward for 10 seconds – was unable to muster the strength to get the ball anywhere near the posts for his conversion.
Again, Barnes needed to react and duly did so with the same intensity as they tried again and again to smash through the Guildford defence. The boys repelled the visitors heroically defences for long periods and passages of play but they eventually squeezed in for a well worked try which they converted thereby making it 12-12 which is how it ended.
Apart from the tremendous game, Welshy spoke at half time saying that the boys were doing everything right and it was understandably low scoring given that two very good teams were ompeting at a very high level.
The day belonged to Guildford RFC and its members for the spectacular way that all players and supporters were looked after throughout the day.
The bar staff kept the 120 players Fed and Beered up whilst also looking after the needs of a few hundred supporters who also needed to be Fed and Watered throughout the day. Cars got stuck or calling on players and volunteers to show off their scrummaging skills to get them safe. Players meanwhile retired to the safety (and warmth) of the Clubhouse to share stories of their attritions on the pitch and a full line of Men of the Matches drank a ‘Drink of Friendship’ between the 8 teams.
Remembering all that is important to us…..We march onto the next game.