Saturday, April 1, 2023

Rugby: T-Birds draw the sting from Wasps

T-Birds 5 v 12 Wasps

YET another game that the T-Birds could and perhaps should have won, but they will have to be satisfied with a losing bonus point and take comfort that 5-12 to Wasps was a much better score line than 49-5 in the reverse fixture earlier in the Season.

In what is becoming a depressingly familiar storyline, Thurrock conceded 2 soft scores at crucial moments and spent the rest of the game playing catch up.

Wasps hit the ground running and quickly put Thurrock under pressure in their own 22. With the Thurrock scrum wilting T’s were quickly defending their own line from a 5m penalty and despite the desperate tackles Joanna Magilchrist was over the line in just 4 minutes.

Ts rallied and put together a good performance over the next 20 minutes that dominated territory and possession. Wasps defended well but after conceding 9 penalties in their own 22 the referee finally lost patience and gave Laura Quinn a yellow card and 10 minutes rest.

From the 5m lineout T’s commenced the familiar catch and drive which Wasps immediately sacked, but a few pick and goes later as Jo Convoy was held up on the line, Emily Scott plucked the ball out of her hands and dived over into the corner.

5-5 gave the Ts hope and they pressed for another score for much of the remaining 15 minutes of the half without success, a solid and committed Wasps defence willing conceding penalties rather than trys.

With 5 minutes to go, Wasps turned up the heat, pushed into Thurrock’s half and set up camp on the try line. Determined attack met determined defence but with Wasps awarded a 5m penalty in the dying seconds and the game stopped for an injury, Thurrock switched off and went to sleep. Half the team were not prepared for the restart and the returning Quinn bagged and easy 5 points. With Edwards claiming the extras, the half finished 5-12.

The second half was a dour affair with Wasps just on top. Despite now having the wind behind them, Thurrock spent much of the time in their own half. Most of the action was between the 22s , neither side looked particularly likely to score and the game finished 5-12.

On the bright side for Thurrock, Georgie Cook played her first rugby for 11 months after a knee reconstruction and ended up with Back of the match, while Forward of the match was once again Gaelle “Frenchie” Marcassuss who tackled anything and everything that moved.

Next week sees the arrival at Oakfield of DMP Sharks. This is game that Thurrock must win or resign themselves to a playoff if they wish to remain in the top flight.

3pm at Oakfield


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