Buoyant UCS look forward to highest London level
DESPITE losing their final London League division four game to champions Hammersmith & Fulham at Hurlingham Park on Saturday, UCS Old Boys finished a clear second in the table - writes Pat Mooney.
Hammersmith & Fulham 36
UCS Old Boys 12
DESPITE losing their final London League division four game to champions Hammersmith & Fulham at Hurlingham Park on Saturday, UCS Old Boys finished a clear second in the table.
The Old Boys, who had made sure of promotion the pervious week with victory over Fullerians, finished with 25 points, two clear of Barnet Elizabethans and Finchley but seven adrift of Hammersmith.
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Although UCS produced a mediocre display against a highly- committed Hammersmith outfit, it could not take the gloss off a successful campaign master- minded by coach and former player Geoff Boxer.
"I am very pleased with the performances of both the older players and the newcomers to the club," said a delighted Boxer.
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"We can look forward to a local derby against Hampstead in London Three next season.
"The club is now playing in its highest position since the advent of league rugby, and this is testament to the players and those who work behind the scenes."
"Two of the newcomers, scrum-half Casey Mee and hooker Ricky Whitehouse, brought valuable experience of National League rugby to Ranulf Road.
"But the squad as a whole have achieved throughout the season and many players have stepped up their displays to the highest level."
On Saturday, however, the Old Boys met a bigger, more mobile and a fully focused Hammersmith outfit, who ran in five tries to the Old Boys' one.
Yet, UCS held their own in the first half to trail 10-7 at the break. Hammersmith opened the scoring with a penalty and added a converted try before Innes touched down for a try converted by Mee.
But the home side pulled away after the break, scoring four further tries.
Two of those tries came when the Old Boys were down to 14 players after Skinner had been sin-binned. Dowding crossed for the visitors' second try.
UCS Old Boys: Harding, Stewart, Friend, Innes, Harris, O'Donnell, Mee, Burkhill, Whitehouse, Waterman (Dowding), Howes, Wheeler, Chapman, Harper (Austen), Cook (Skinner).
l The club's second string are through to the final of the Middlesex Merit Table Bowl on Saturday.