Bognor beat Millbrook - but rugby club's Super Saturday had much more going on

It was a day for Bognor Rugby Club to be proud.

Thursday, 30th January 2020, 10:30 am
Bognor celebrate one of the tries that saw off Millbrook / Picture: Kate Shemilt

With three teams playing at home after a hearty league luncheon, it was a celebration of a growing club and the sport players and fans love.

The outcome owas perfect too - three home wins and 60-plus players representing the club including eight colts players.

What’s more the three Bognor teams scored more than 140 points between them.

Bognor on top against Millbrook / Picture: Kate Shemilt

In front of a large home crowd Bognor’s first XVset out to impress tand continue their winning streak.

Coming out the blocks eagerly, they applied pressure instantly and it wasn’t long before Jeremy Newton Young was scoring the first points of the day, slotting a penalty kick in front of the posts,

From the restart, Chris Webb was fed the ball and he went on his first destructive run of the day, one of many from the fastest prop in the league.

The foundation was set for a clearance kick and Millbrook found themselves in possession in their own half. Unable to penetrate the Bognor defence, Millbrook opted for a wide attack out of desperation and a cunning Paddy Burnett plucked the ball from the midfield pass and hared downfield to score under the posts. Conversion good, 10-0.

Bognor on top against Millbrook / Picture: Kate Shemilt

Again Bognor attacked well from kick-off, this time in the form of Freddie Hayes, who flew down the touchline before placing a clever kick over his opposite man, narrowly missing the bounce. Hayes consolation was driving the sweeping Millbrook 15 into touch with the help of his supporting players.

From the lineout, Bognor orchestrated productive set plays with the forwards, led by Shane Stevens and Josh Burgess, charging through. Sam Newcombe, controlling the game as ever, fed the ball to Newton Young, who delayed his pass perfectly to manipulate the defence and allow Webb to stroll through the gap and around the final defender.

Another try under the posts and another successful conversion, 17-0.

Millbrook, opting to kick deeper from their restart, applied pressure of their own and defensive heroics on the goal-line saw the departure of centre Burnett with a head injury.

Tom Parsons, who had been a terror for Millbrook at the breakdown, was over-eager, penalised and on the receiving end of a yellow card. Millbrook opted to scrum 5m short of the try line drove over well for their No8 to drop on the ball and get five points of his own. Conversion missed, 17-5.

On the stroke of half-time a kick from Millbrook landed in the arms of Hayes and an awkward collision resulted in the Bognor winger’s exit.

With two backs leaving the field, a reshuffle was in order - captain Burgess made his move to the centres, while Connor Herrington was introduced at full-back and Jamie Foote, colts debutant, was introduced to the back row.

It wasn’t long before Foote stamped his authority, his first contribution a bulldozing run through several Millbrook tacklers. This set the tone for the half and encouraged his colts teammates Brad Smith, another debutant, and Nathan Thompson to follow suit and offer more strong ball carrying option.

Smith also a constant nuisance in and around the ruck area.

From a Millbrook clearance, Herrington capitalised on space to the left and after burning his opposition on the outside, provided Chris Hay with the wide pass that would put the winger in for his first of the day. Conversion out wide unsuccessful, 22-5.

Continued pressure from the home side forced another Millbrook infringement and Josh Burgess put his faith in Newton Young to make it count. Penalty successful, 25-5.

The next score came from an attacking scrum for Bognor. With Lee Mason, Joe Benjamin and company digging in to secure the ball, an opportunistic Newcombe darted from the back of the scrum on the blind side and his arced line interested the last defender before giving the scoring pass to Hay. 30-5, conversion missed.

The final try came after Robinson attacked in the centre of the park. The forwards, with Marc Voigt now on for Mason, increased the momentum with fast carries around the fringes and eventually Herrington was provided with the ball out wide.

Gliding down the wing at pace, he passed several would be tacklers before being tackled 5m short of the line, a silky backhanded offload found Freddie Burgess who dotted the ball down. 35-5, kick missed.

Bognor: Webb, Benjamin, Mason, Stevens, Thompson, Smith, Parsons, J Burgess, Newcombe, Newton Young, F Burgess, Robinson, Burnett, Hay, Hayes, Voigt, Foote, Herrington.