PJF march on in spite of spirited Bec OBs performance
By Niel Kenny
100% Record maintained
On a chill grey afternoon PJF entertained Bec OBs at the Pightle. Right from the kick off PJF showed their attacking intent with a swift break from their 22m and only a last ditch tackle prevented a very rapid early score. But PJF continued to press and after some very good running play centre Luke Crouchman opened the scoring out wide on the left. Pierce Fernando added the extra points with a very good kick. From the restart PJF were pushed back to their 22m and suddenly spinning the ball out wide winger Declan Williams beat his man and ran 50m before the covering tackler looked to have him is his sights, but with a deft bit on footballing skill Declan chipped the ball back in field and Scrum half Jack Kennedy swept passed the covering Bec players to gather the ball and touch down under the posts. The conversion was kicked. From the kick off Bec applied pressure and turned the ball over. There followed a prolonged period of pressure from Bec with a number of attacks coming close only to be brought down a few yards out. PJFs defence held firm, a massive improvement on the previous week's display and Bec had to settle for only 3 points. A poor return for their endeavour, but a big feather in the cap of PJF's defence. From the restart PJF reasserted their ascendency and after a period of spirited Bec OB defence scrum half Kennedy found his way through to dab down under the posts. Pierce again added the extras. There followed a period of play where Bec frustrated the PJF attack showing organisation and durability. They were looking to be the first side this season to deny PJF a bonus point in the bag by half time. But the pressure started to tell and a couple of penalties conceded on the Bec 5m line saw PJF take the 5m lineouts and eventually the driving mauls and sustained pressure told and flanker Joe Dwyer went over to claim the bonus point and Pierce, kicking impeccably, added the additional two points to close the half with PJF in command at 28 points to 3.
The second half saw Bec increase their line speed and put in crucial tackles to prevent PJF from adding to the score for 15minutes into the half. It was only after a turnover and a fortuitous piece of play that centre Dom Driver collected the ball and crashed through a gap in the Bec line to get the score board ticking over again. Extra points were added. But still Bec didn't give up and maintained their line speed and defence width, denying PJF the room to create more opportunities. The pace of the game was also taking its toll on PJF who were starting to blow a bit. With the game petering out a scrappy bit of play saw flanker Joe Dwyer pounce on a loose ball and run 30m to touch down under the posts. Pierce maintained his 100% record for the afternoon and PJF finished the game 42 - 3 to the good. It was an excellent game of rugby in which Bec played a full part. PJF maintained their impressive record and welcomed back Jon Osborne who had a fantastic game at fly half. The game also saw Kian Macnulty put in his first appearance for the team in the second half and show promise particularly with his lineout work.
The Marlins also had a successful afternoon running out 24 - 36 winners down at Cobham. The weeks of pain and heavy defeats coming to an end as the team grows into the tough new league they find themselves in this season. Hopefully the Marlins will be able to kick on from this game to consolidate their position in this league. The Marlins welcome all new players and returning players to their ranks, so if you want to pull your boots on, get in touch, you will be welcomed into great team and a very friendly club that puts enjoyment and fun at the centre of everything we do.