Hampshire Counties One rugby: New Milton punished by powerful Petersfield
Hampshire Counties One
Petersfield RFC 61
New Milton RFC 10
New Milton knew they were in for a tough contest when making the long haul to face Petersfield - the undefeated league leaders that had scored 193 points in just three games.
Any in doubt of the power and speed of the Petersfield team knew the reality when they scored two converted tries in the first five minutes before finally outscoring New Milton by nine tries to one.
Milton kicked off the match, and the hosts immediately ran the ball back, with the Petersfield players brushing aside each and every tackle attempt that any Milton player could muster before repeating the trick from the second kick-off.
It was a case of third-time lucky, with New Milton’s third kick-off in five minutes leading to a penalty award, which Connor Hammerstone converted.
The visitors were gaining some control and looked to narrow the score by kicking a penalty to the corner.
They won the resulting line-out, and the backs attacked the try-line, but a penalty gave Petersfield possession, and they took it quickly, raced up the other end, and scored a converted try.
New Milton gradually got their game together, making tackles and creating pressure.
However, Petersfield turned over possession, and following two scrums on the five-metre line, they scored another converted try.
Milton’s Jude Payne made a good turnover, with Dan Jackson following up the former’s kick ahead, but another penalty allowed Petersfield to score another try before the break for a 33-3 lead.
Petersfield pressured straight from kick-off, but the Milton forwards worked well to prevent any score and earn a penalty after progressing into Petersfield’s half.
However, the kick did not reach the touchline, and Petersfield used the ball well to run in a converted try.
Milton made a game of it well, creating pressure in the Petersfield half and 22.
Nonetheless, the advantage penalty awards were not exploited, and from a Milton line-out, the hosts ran in another converted try.
Finally, Cristian Brown gave the New Milton fans something to cheer after intercepting a long pass and using a delicate kick ahead before charging forward, regaining possession and scoring. Connor Hammerstone took responsibility for the conversion, slotting the extras.
Still, the game’s final five minutes went much the same way as the first five, with Petersfield scoring two converted tries.
New Milton will next host the league’s lowest-placed side, Alton, on Saturday at 3pm.
New Milton: S. Bew, H. Chung, R. Pearce, J. Corbett, J. Blair, O. Woodhouse, J. Payne, D. Jackson, D. Thomas, C. Brown, J. Eldridge, L. Waugh, C. Hammerstone, L. Day, A.Bolter-Jackson. Subs: W. Pearson, J. Lines, H. Fitzgerald.