It was a glorious Sunday, although some (mostly the tight 5) might have thought it a bit too warm for rugby. The Hammers 1st XV were focused on the tough battle ahead, we knew from our experience 3 weeks earlier that S&E had a strong game plan.
Unfortunately for Hammers the 1st half of the match proved to be fairly similar to the previous game with S&E using their strong kicking game and quick runners to put pressure on the Hammers defence. This pressure led to 3 S&E tries in the first half and, despite strong carries, opposition yellow cards and pressure in the opposition 22, Hammers were unable to reply. There was another blow to the Hammers in the first half with Chloe J off early due to a bad shoulder injury (please see the whatsapp group for the x-ray) but luckily we could replace one Chloe with another and Chloe E bravely stepped up to scrum half for the rest of the game. The score at half time was 0-19.
The second half started more evenly with Hammers’ defence holding firm. S&E started using some ‘interesting’ tactics, including trying to take out our ladies director and incurring a further 2 yellow cards. They eventually crossed the Hammers line 25 mins into the second half through the a kick chase from their speedy fullback. Hammers were not to be denied a try in this final game of the season though. Our set piece had been strong throughout the game and we used it to punish S&E’s indiscretions in the final 10 minutes of the game and move up the pitch to 5 metres from their line. A strong scrum allowed Kaye to pick and go to get within a few metres of the whitewash. Then a quick red ball to a charging Hannah was all that was needed, no defence was going to stop her from there. A positive end to a match with a disappointing final score: 5-26.
Hammers still finish the season 2nd in the league having only dropped 3 games.
Back of the Match went to Chloe E for stepping up to scrum half after Chloe J was injured early in the game.
Forward of the Match went to Hannah for her strong carries and try scoring.