Wanderers begin defence of Mallett Cup

Wanderers 49

St Peters  11

“We fielded a strong 1st XV out of respect to the prestige of the Mallett Cup and because we knew what a tough opposition St Peters would be. Despite the look of the scoreboard the game was a really tough match” Commented Director of Rugby Martyn Fowler.

On a still night at the Memorial Ground the Wanderers began their defence of the Mallett Cup with a seven try win over St Peters. Going straight to the wide channels from the off the home side stretched the St Peters defence and took play deep into the visitor’s territory. Phil Pariyo had a chance early on and Josh Male went close but the defence held firm. When awarded a scrum 5 the Wanderers piled on the weight (Joe took part) and the referee went under the posts for a penalty try to get the scoreboard moving 7-0. St Peters responded well and soon reduced the arrears with a long range penalty 7-3 but the home side went wide again off a lineout. James Loxton made a timely intervention and he set Pariyo away who rounded the defence to score. Luke Fish converted 14-3. With their tails up they Wanderers soon extended the lead. Loxton seemed to be held in midfield but he shrugged off his tacklers and had the support of Max Wootton who charged away to score the third converted try 21-3. There then followed a long delay as Anthony Cox received treatment for a neck injury which required him to be stretchered off. Fortunately, after a lengthy lie in at A&E no serious damage was found and he’ll have a few weeks off with some ligament damage. The Rocks came off the delay well and put the home side under pressure. A second penalty made it 21-6 but despite their best efforts they could not break down the solid Wanderers defence. The game ebbed and flowed as both sides showed skill with ball in hand. Josh Male went close again after another intervention from Loxton and the Wanderers added their fourth try when Cameron Gibbon crashed over. Once again St peters were not going to go down without a real fight and as the half closed they had their best spell of the game which resulted in a deserved try to send the sides into the break at 28-11.

The second half followed a similar pattern to the first with the Wanderers looking to exploit the wide channels and The Rocks favouring a more direct approach. Rob Evans, on as a sub, set up an attack but it was foiled by great jackaling by the defence. St Peters continued to compete well in all aspects of the game and the Wanderers found them difficult to break down. The scoreboard finally moved on when Will Adams Jones made a break from deep. He was hauled down in the visitor’s 22 but the home side showed great composure to keep the attack moving and Tom Penri Ellis popped up on a great angle to take a pass from Fish and crash over under the posts 35-11. As the subs from both sides came on the game became a little scrappy and the home side became a little too ambitious at times and the visitors had another good spell and their scrum started to exert a little pressure. Despite that they could not reduce the arrears as the Wanderers defence, which has been very solid so far this season. Held firm and scrambled well to keep the Rocks at bay. As the game entered its final minutes Adams Jones scored after a St Peters attack broke down and the Wanderers pounced on a loose ball and the scoring was finished off when Evans sent young wing Harrison Ashby away to score the 7th try. Final score 49-11.

Wanderers scorers

Tries: Penalty try, Phil Pariyo, Max Wootton, Will Adams Jones, Tom Penri Ellis, Cameron Gibbon,       Harrison Ashby

Cons: Luke Fish (6)

Massiv Man of the Match : Josh Male

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