Verulamians on the money in Bank of England win

First published in Sport
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Verulamians overcame horrendous conditions to clinch a deserved 15-3 home win over Bank of England in Herts Middlesex One.

The visitors started the game strongly and caught Verulamians cold as they kicked well for field position against the wind.

After some impressive tackling the visiting side trapped the Vees in their own half forcing a penalty which they kicked to take an early lead. However, the Vees soon burst into life as lock Joe Brouder hit the line with pace and cut through the defensive line. Brouder charged towards the line but was dragged down short. The Vees pack supported well and after several failed drives towards the line the ball was shifted wide.

Fly-half Sam Townsend threw a superb under the legs pass to centre Ben Russell who offloaded to full-back Callum Drysdale for the opening try.

The conversion was missed but the Vees had established a lead which they would not give up for the rest of the game.

Verulamians piled on the pressure and this paid off when Townsend twisted and burrowed over for the second score. With the second try also unconverted the hosts went into half-time with a 10-3 lead.

With the conditions in the visitors’ favour, Bank of England came out for the second half with purpose and soon worked their way into the Vees half.

After several phases it looked as if they may break the hosts defence but an excellent tackle from wing George Irwin, in which he managed to hold the ball up and win a turnover, relieved the pressure on the Vees line.

Verulamians quickly capitalised on the turnover, kicking long and once again the Vees pack asserted their dominance as hard tackling and pressure at the break down forced Bank of England into a poor clearing kick.

From the resulting lineout, the Vees set up a strong and controlled driving maul which drove 20m to score the third try. As the pile of bodies rolled away number eight Tim Fretter emerged with the ball as the scorer.

This was just reward for his hard and committed running throughout the game. Once again the conversion was missed but crucially the Vees had established a two-score lead.

Despite the deteriorating conditions, the Vees played some scintillating rugby which went unrewarded as they were unable to secure the fourth try and a bonus point as the final pass went begging. Bank of England almost got a late try but Russell produced a brilliant covering tackle to keep the visitors at bay.

Verulamians will look to continue their winning start to the year at Cheshunt this weekend.

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