BOGNOR produced a rampant performance scoring ten tries and not conceding a single point on their way to a 62-0 victory against Petersfield.
Injuries meant Irishman Patrick Gibbs moved to outside centre, ladies’ favourite Josh Riggall started at fly-half, the flamboyant Ainsley Howard filled in at blindside flanker, talisman Harry Dyer made his first start in many a moon at openside and, on the wing, there was a debut for young Will Cullen.
With an average age of 25, Bognor knew they had to play quickly and not be drawn into an arm wrestle.
They did just that.
A strong chase of the kick-off saw Jacob Masters soar to regain possession. Bognor’s forwards battered their way into the Petersfield 22 and the away side infringed.
Gibbs took the initiative with a tap penalty and was held up. Hooker Mark Ubsdell got his hands on the ball and burrowed over the line for the first try. Conversion missed.
Bognor soon scored again. Howard dominated the high kick-off and Newcombe sent a long box-kick back towards the Petersfield full-back. Cullen hared after the ball and put in a magnificent tackle, forcing the ball loose in the process. Gibbs was there to snaffle the loose ball and offload Josh Burgess for another score. Conversion missed.
Howard was next on the scoresheet. After an intense kick-chase, Howard took an inside pop-pass 30m from the line. The Plymouth University graduate danced a wobbly side-step to beat the first man, sold an audacious dummy to beat the second man and then outsprinted the cover defence. The conversion was missed.
Bognor began to infringe and referee Neal Hyatt was eagle-eyed. Petersfield established territory in Bognor’s half but were shut down after some stout defence from ex-platform diver Shane Stevens and Harry Dyer.
Hornibrook hacked on a dropped pass and Newcombe raced after the ball. He outsprinted the full-back to dot down out wide. Hornibrook, having missed three sitters, knocked over the conversion.
Ubsdell threw to the tail of the lineout and Burgess bagged another try after slick handling from Josh Riggall and vice-captain Newcombe. Conversion successful.
Returning captain Jack Tompkins took a quick tap-penalty before offloading to Newcombe who bounced over for his second. Conversion successful once again.
Pat Gibbs was the next try-scorer. He threw a long pass intended for Stevens but it was deflected by Petersfield straight back into the arms of a bewildered Gibbs who, by then, had a clear run to the line. Conversion successful.
After a tough first ten minutes in the second half, Bognor broke the second-half deadlock. Masters and Tom James carried deep into Petersfield territory. Hornibrook received the ball wide, skipped passed two tackles and was then barged over the line by Harry Dyer and Jumbo James.
Mike Page was introduced for Tompkins. After giving away a string of penalties, Bognor became frustrated. Newcombe restored sense by completing his hat-trick with a breakaway try, converted.
Then it all went a bit mad. Colt Joe Greenslade was sin-binned for an infringement at the ruck with Jacob Masters following him to the bin.
Man-mountain Chris Webb was brought on and threw himself into the game with some huge hits but one got him sent to the sin-bin.
Incredibly, Bognor’s 12 men kept Petersfield at bay and scored another try – Gibbs picked up a loose ball after a big tackle from Dyer, chipped over the defence and scored.
This week there is a break for the World Cup final. It will be shown on the big screen at Bognor RFC – all welcome.
BOGNOR: Greenslade, Ubsdell, Angelov, Masters, James, Howard, Dyer, Tompkins, Newcombe, Riggall, Stevens, Burgess, Gibbs, Cullen, Hornibrook. Webb, Page, Broch.
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