Match Report: Hendon RFC 99 - 12 Staines RFC
By Liam Murphy
Hendon 1st’s 15 tries create a Club record in League rugby and the 2nds win a close fought game to move up the table
The 1st XV match was sponsored by former First XV winger Andy Pelekanos and was preceded by a lunch for Hendon VPs and supporters, principal guest Bob Lawless President of Middlesex County RFU and members of the Staines committee.
The combined score of 111 was the highest number of points scored in a single game throughout the entire League programme but compliments were paid by Hendon's players and Committee to an under strength Staines outfit who could have taken the easy option of cancelling as injuries, availability and International Rugby preference by key players cost them a full strength side.
However to Staines' credit they fulfilled the fixture with Hendon only realising the circumstances once the match was underway. That said it took Hendon 10 mins to deliver their first score with some rugged defence from Staines as they were pinned into their own territory. Will Theaker went over for Hendon’s first try and the flood gates opened as he added a second score with ease minutes later 10-0 both having been scored out on the wing the conversions just went wide.
Captain Cian Hynes took the next two scores with individual runs from the Hendon territory converting both his own scores for Hendon to a 24-0 lead, a bonus point secured and only 20 minutes on the clock.
Further tries in the first period came from Rossa Dooley, Billy Burrell, Tom Mathias, TJ O’Sullivan, Rob Casey, and Donal O’Sullivan all but one converted by Hynes for a half time score of 64 points to nil.
Into the second half Staines now had at least the benefit of the Hendon slope and some wind assistance and to their credit pinned the home outfit onto their own try line for a 10 minute spell which Hendon defended well before Theaker went over for his hat-trick 71-0.
Staines came straight back into the game and Hendon were caught inside their 22 allowing the Staines back-row players to combine and crash over for a deserved score 71-5.
Midfield play slowed the scoring opportunities until the visitors felt the full pressure of Hendon again in the 25th minute as Burrell ran from defence to score 78-0.
The following 10 minutes was dominated again by Hendon with tries from Burrell, giving him his hat-trick, another from Theaker adding to his 3, Casey with his second for the 15th try with all second half tries converted by man of the match Hynes.
But credit to Staines, a miss-fielded kick by Hendon allowed a scrum inside the Hendon 22 giving an opportunist kick over the Hendon defence for Staines to touch down under the posts to convert their consolation score to end play at 99-12.
This Saturday Hendon First team are away to Feltham in the Semi-Final of Middlesex Vase Competition before returning to another league match on the 23rd March away to Actonians.
On the top pitch at the same time Hendon 2nds were playing a Merit Table game against St Albans 2nd XV who were second in the Table above Hendon in 4th place. This was a much closer contest with Hendon holding on uphill in the second half to take the honours 12 points to 7.