Rugby: It’s been coming - but Bognor are mightily relieved with second win

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Bognor notched their second win of the season as they ended the first half of their home London two south west campaign on a high with a 29-12 triumph over Camberley.

The game started with the much bigger and heavier Camberley side - five places higher than Bognor in the league - trying to assert themselves.

But Bognor aren’t a side to be bullied on their own patch and came away dominant in attack and defence. Crunching defence in the centre by Pat Gibbs and Dave Sweeney put a stop to every attack Camberley tried to offer.

The home side eventually turned their dominance into points.

Man of the match Adam Knight won a turnover in midfield and Rob Parry pinned the visitors into the corner. Karl Flinn stole a lineout against throw, his quick mind and alertness found the rampaging Lee Balchin whose delicate hands gave Ben Burns a simple try. Parry added the extras.

This was by far Bognor’s best display of the season and their energy was underlined with the second try. As Camberley looked to have created an overlap, Rudi Upton put in the hit of the season to dislodge the ball, a quick pick-up and counter-attack was launched by Lee Thompson and after several quick passes Bognor were clear, tighthead prop Graham Broom on hand to finish a classic team try. Parry again added the extras.

Several opportunities went by, with veteran Tony Johnson adjudged to have lost the ball in the act of scoring. Referee Stuart Goodwin made some excellent calls with both sides guilty of throwing away chances.

Bognor ended the first half in spectacular fashion.

A solid scrum just inside the opposition half was fed to the backline, Dan Brock picked the perfect line and burst through several defenders, and with just the full-back to beat, his dancing feet and pace outwitted the lonely defender as he galloped away to score a great try in the corner. Parry once again was spot on with the extras to make it 21-0 at the interval.

The second half was more even with Camberley and ill discipline by Bognor gifted the visitors the opportunity to attack. For once the defence held strong, Knight and Flinn both prominent with key turnovers to keep their line intact.

Camberley camped in the Bognor 22 for the first 20 minutes of the half and only a missed tackle allowed the visitors to score.

Bognor were buoyed by their defensive efforts and Josh Burgess won the kick-off to give Bognor an attacking platform. Gibbs and Sweeney combined to feed Upton, skipper Balchin supported the flying full-back to keep possession and spotted Thompson haring up the touchline. His perfect pass allowed the Scotsman to dive over for the bonus-point try.

Camberley pulled another back in the last quarter, but Bognor were not to be denied. The final word went fittingly to Parry, who will now be out for a couple of months after undergoing surgery on an old injury, who calmly stepped up to slot a 40m penalty to put the game beyond any doubt.

As the final whistle blew the emotion and relief was plain to see. A long and difficult first half of the season had ended well - but Bognor will not rest on this great victory as they prepare to visit league leaders Gosport this week.

BOGNOR: Upton, Brock, Gibbs, Sweeney, Burgess, Parry, Legge, Flinn, Knight, Balchin, Harding, Thompson, Broom, Burns, Johnson, Seargent, Groome, Buttly.