Rhinos’ women reach new heights, but men suffer heavy loss
- Credit: Archant
Women’s National Championship South East North Two: Kilburn Cosmos 12 Haringey Rhinos 32; Herts/Middlesex Two: Haringey Rhinos 0 Watford 33
Haringey Rhinos’ women’s team moved to the top of the National Championship South East North Two standings with a 32-12 win at Kilburn Cosmos.
Rhinos received to start and made slow but steady progress up the pitch, allowing Hannah Bennett to put the first points of the day on the board, bursting through the Kilburn line on the left of the pitch.
The next try came from Fran Gamble, who managed to ground the ball with her body to secure the try.
Molly McNamara then bulldozed with determination through the line, allowing skipper Aimee Foulkes to break through a small gap in the Kilburn defence.
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Foulkes crossed the line and put the ball down between the posts, Louise Bonnet successfully converting to make it 22-0 at the break.
The second half saw points for Kilburn after they utilised some of their strongest runners with good offloads.
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McNamara and Gamble both scored their second tries of the match in the second half.
McNamara again blasted through defenders, while Gamble made an impressive sprint from the Rhinos 22, side-stepping the Kilburn defenders to give her the initial momentum.
Cosmos scored another try to finish with the same steady use of their stronger ball carriers, but were denied their third which was held up in the closing seconds by the Rhinos.
*Haringey Rhinos’ men’s team slipped to a heavy 33-0 loss at home to Watford in Herts/Middlesex Two.
Rhinos got off to the worst possible start, quickly conceding as Watford’s strike runners carved through the Haringey defence.
The hosts struggled to settle and weren’t able to make the most of their limited possession.
A further two scores followed, with Rhinos 21-0 down as the half ended.
The second half brought some signs of improvement from the Rhinos.
Defensive line-speed and organisation improved, but one costly lapse saw Watford stroll over the line unchallenged off an attacking lineout.
Elsewhere though, the pack started to put Watford under pressure, especially at the scrum, and phases started to build.
Aiden Morrison made a man-of-the-match contribution off the bench, adding some much-needed fire to the defence.
The backs showed moments of attacking threat, with Dwight Caulker and Alex Hull combining effectively in one sweeping move.
With persistent rain making conditions difficult throughout the match, the error count rose steadily, and Haringey found themselves pinned in their own half for much of the later moments of the game.
The pressure ultimately told, with Watford scoring again to seal the victory.
Men’s report supplied by Patrick Woodham.