Match Report – Canterbury 3rd XV vs Cranbrook 2nd XV
Canterbury 3s sealed the league win with a hard fought victory over a fired up and skillful Cranbrook side.
Cranbrook had beaten Canterbury on the opening game of the season at their ground and were in the running to win the league if they could beat Canterbury and deny them a bonus point.
The home side found space on the outside early in the game, with Sam Merrell gliding over from fullback for the opening score. But ill discipline gave Cranbrook field position and the visitors capitalised with a converted try and a penalty to take them ahead.
Canterbury made the most of the possession they were able to get, however. Ollie Simpson made a half break down the left and put Barney Howard into space, and the centre was able to cut inside 3 defenders and score under the posts. An arcing run by Alex Williams after great hands from Harry Jackson didn’t quite result in a try, but soon after Ben Waite wriggled free and dotted down in the left corner giving the home side a 15-10 platform at half time.
After the break Canterbury put themselves under pressure with repeated penalties given away, but fierce defence and breakdown work by Dan Mills and Jack Waite kept Cranbrook at bay. The pace and handling of the city side gave them plenty of opportunities and paid dividends before long. Slick passing put Mark Stone in the corner, and a sneaky tap and go saw Alex Williams slip through. Cranbrook still threatened, but the game was finally put to bed when a break by Jake Upward led to Dan Gill putting his famous sidestep to good use and scoring by the posts on the final play of the game.
Final score 32-10.
Season record: Played 18, won 15, lost 3.