Colchester 10 FULLERIANS 1st XV 5
By Kevin Brind
Fantastic effort by Fullers which was so close
London 1 North League
Fullerians showed great heart and spirit in this game against second in the league Colchester. Their social media expected an easy game and how wrong they were as they were taken to pieces in the scrum and Fullers in the dying seconds could have won it being camped on Colchester’s line. Fullers were tenacious in the tackle and forced the error from the home side frustrating their hosts as they didn’t have it their own way.
Fullers had to make changes due to availability and the guys dug in putting Colchester on the back foot. Fullers line out was working well and drove the home side up field. Ill-discipline at the set piece by Colchester cost them field position as Fullers capitalised to pin them in their 22. Unfortunately Fullers couldn’t turn this early pressure into points and let their hosts off the hook.
Fullers had to make changes due to injury in the game but that didn’t put this young Fullers side off as they kept putting in the tackles to shut the home side out.
Eventually Colchester did cross the line as they broke the Fullers defence down the right side for their wing to score.
In the second half Fullers applied the pressure in the set piece. Fullers had a line out on the 5 metre line that was taken down illegally. The referee had enough and sent the flanker to the sin bin. Moments later with the Colchester scrum going backwards at a rate of knots saw their prop go to the sin bin. Another scrum and went down again for a possible penalty try? No Fullers picked and drove until prop John Barson was on hand to score. The conversion went wide but at 5-5 the home crowd was silent.
Fullers continued to dominate putting over 10 phases together at times, but just couldn’t quite get over the line. Colchester did have opportunities to score but they knocked on and got brought down by some dogged Fullers tackling.
Colchester back to 15 did eventually score as Fullers kicked out of their 22 but the chase was not as it could have been as the visitors tired. The left wing scored but the conversion went wide.
In the last minutes Fullers earned another penalty at scrum time and kicked for the corner. The line out had been fantastic all game but unfortunately miscued and the chance went missing to score. The ref blew his whistle much to the relief of the home crowd and coaches.
“The guys who played were absolutely magnificent. We played with heart and put our bodies on the line and I couldn’t have asked any more from them. Sometimes it is those little 1%s that make the difference and we could have easily won today and no one would have said we didn’t deserve it. Colchester are second and now in the play off for the National league and we are twelfth and took them to the wire. We have our last game at home next week and will give it everything we have.” commented Fullerians Head Coach Rich Hoskins.
Team. Barson, Williams, Bushell (Macgregor-Smith 40), Kerr, Boyd, D. Toon, Longbottom, Harvey, Matchett, Evans (Fowler 40), Woodham, Dollard, S. Smith, Williams, Mann. Deller.
Man of the Match: Ben Matchett