|13th Jan 2018||3:00 pm||Zoo Sports Shield Div 2||2017/18|
A nail biter of a game saw Pilgrims topple Zoo League leaders Hertford and move into second spot in the table. A massive defensive effort in the closing minutes eventually won it for Canterbury as they avenged a heavy defeat at Hertford earlier in the season. They resisted early pressure by the visitors and opened a 14-point lead with tries from flanker David Bailey and wing Guy Hilton, both converted by his brother Will. New prop Elliot White’s charge and the work of a strong back division led to the Bailey try and those backs were prominent again when Hilton registered his touchdown. It was the only time in the match that there was clear water between the sides. Hertford stormed back with a converted try and when Ross Comfort was yellow carded for a deliberate knock on a minute before halt time it proved costly. Before he returned the visitors drew level with another converted score early in the second half.
The experienced Tom Best forced the gap to put Pilgrims ahead once again, Hilton converting, but it did not last long. Hertford were back on level terms within minutes through a third converted try. Will Hilton, a controlling influence together with the Best brothers, landed a penalty goal and a try from the younger Best, Ollie, who smashed through several tackles pushed Canterbury into a crucial eight point lead. Hertford cut that back with a penalty goal and then threw everything at the home line.
In the last play of the game they were forced into touch a metre short as Pilgrims claimed a notable scalp.
Canterbury: O.Best, G.Hilton, R.Comfort, T.Best, M.Howard, W.Hilton, R.Howard, C.Townley, E.Deacon, E.White, A.Wake-Smith, J.Craig, V.Meredith, D.Bailey, G.Westgarth, B.Nash, S.Jaynes, H.Dance, C.Watson
Hertford 2nd XV