Rugby round-up: Nigerian’s no-show is a boost for UCS

UCS Old Boys jumped out of the London Division Two North-West drop zone after relegation rivals, London Nigerian, failed to field a team on Saturday.

The visitors were unable to fulfil the fixture, gifting UCS a walkover victory and five valuable points in the basement battle.

That meant that the Old Boys leapfrogged London Nigerian, who replaced them in the bottom two – and they also overtook Grasshoppers, who went down 57-15 at Hemel Hempstead.

It is UCS’s turn to take on second-placed Hemel this weekend, and third-placed Hampstead will be hoping that their local rivals can do them a favour.

Hampstead recorded a 17-10 home win over Harpenden on Saturday, with Phil Carr and Jon Beswick scoring first-half tries which were converted by Morgan Clement, who also slotted home a long-range penalty.

However, Hemel’s bonus point meant they extended their lead to seven points in the play-off spot.

Meanwhile, Haringey Rhinos went down 7-6 at home against Datchworth and remain bottom of London North-West Division Three.

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Tom Pert put the Rhinos 6-0 up with two early penalties but the hosts conceded a converted try – and Pert then missed the chance to win the game with the last kick of the match.

Hendon are also deep in trouble in Herts/Middlesex One after a 118-0 defeat against Old Merchant Taylors’.

That leaves them 23 points from safety, behind Belsize Park, who did not have a fixture at the weekend.