Thames RFC are edged out in tough derby rugby encounter

First published in Sport

Thames 7,

Pegasus Palmerians 10

RUGBY: PEGASUS made it three league wins on the bounce when they narrowly edged out local rivals Thames.

Thames themselves are having a very strong season in Essex 2, so Pegasus knew that this was going to be a very tough encounter – especially away from home.

Things did not go well for Pegasus in the opening 15 minutes.

Thames opened the scoring under the posts with a well earned try after their strong number eight picked up from the base of the scrum.

And Thames crashed under the post for a converted try.

Five minutes later, in a very competitive forward battle, Pegasus’ day became more difficult when they were reduced to 14 men.

A straight red card for Peg number eight Alec Branton – who verbally reacted angrily towards the referee after being at the receiving end of a dangerous tackle – saw the numbers change. For the remainder of the half, Pegasus had to dig in and keep their defence line solid as Thames battled away. Pegs made the best of their chances.

They used a seven man scrum to turn over an attacking Thames scrum on Pegs’ five metre line.

And it was from this that Pegasus began to believe that there was a chance of sneaking a win against their local rivals.

Thames led 7-0 at the break but after the restart captain Collier inspired his lads. The Pegasus pack demonstrated their commitment in abundance by getting on top of their Thames pack rivals from South Ockendon.

Pegasus forwards and backs linked up well to threaten the Thames defensive line in open play.

And they produced quickly recycled ball at the breakdown.

It was when the Pegasus pack began to get on top that the repeated infringement penalties kept coming Peg’s way, as Thames pack fought to get back on top. When the first kickable penalty was available, Collier instructed Ryan Nunn to take the points on offer.

Pegasus continued to attack at every opportunity looking for the vital try. Finally the moment came after the Pegasus pack secured and released a quick ball for their backs to flourish.

It was just what Collier and Fraser Kidd wanted. And the duo’s quick hands allow ed Kidd to break through the centre channel to score the decisive winning try out wide.

The Herd Lane boys held out for six minutes as the pressure mounted.

And despite being camped on their own five metre line, they held firm.

Thames tried to force the issue with their attacking scrums but in the end they ran out of time and were forced to swallow only their second defeat of teh season. Tomorrow (Saturday) Pegasus face second-in-the-table Writtle at Herd Lane with the kick off due to be at 2.15pm. For all the borough's rugby see Friday's THURROCK GAZETTE

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