Brentwood RFC 31 | 17 Colchester 1st XV
An exciting contest sees Colchester compete well with top table Brentwood
There are some tosses you want to win more than most and away at Brentwood is on of them. A pitch that slopes steeply to one corner usually results in a game of two very different halves and so it proved on Saturday when, having lost the call, Colchester’s fortunes changed at the interval.
The initial exchanges were as fierce as expected from sides second and fourth in the league and Colchester absorbed early pressure with crunching tackles from the back row of Whiteman plus Ollie and Harrison Pickett ably backed up by skipper Liam Pickett. It was Colchester who scored first when turnover ball was spun quickly wide by Whiteman for James Crozier to sprint to the left corner. Crozier converted his own try to create a 0-7 lead.
Colchester had the edge in the scrum with McMillan, Hartley and Awesu giving their opponents in the front row a very hard time. It was end-to-end rugby and strong running by the Brentwood backs soon levelled the score. Colchester went ahead again at the end of the first quarter when Harrison Pickett took a quick tapped penalty to drive over near the posts. Crozier converted to restore a seven point advantage at 7-14.
Colchester might have gone further ahead but a couple of missed opportunities and wrong options meant they didn’t make the most of the slope. Having stopped a drive from a Brentwood line out, a blindside break allowed the home team to score wide left and with a well-taken conversion the half ended all-square at 14-14.
Brentwood ill-discipline allowed Crozier to put Colchester ahead again with a straightforward penalty in front of the posts. It was to be the visitor’s score however as Brentwood steadily gained more possession and forced Colchester to defend. The home team no 8 was a constant threat which half backs Cutbush and Higgins did well to contain. An unfortunate yellow card for second row Joe Colcomb tipped the balance however and Brentwood scored twice in ten minutes.
The first try was slightly fortunate as the ball popped out of a ruck for a second blindside score in the left corner. There was nothing lucky as Brentwood’s ability to quickly move the ball wide meant their strong running backs were finally able to breach Colchester’s line. Both were converted giving the home team a 28-17 lead after 60 minutes.
The final quarter saw Colchester throw everything into attack but were unable to maintain possession allowing Brentwood to simply kick them back into the corner. A penalty to the home team meant the scores ended at 31-7. It was a good game that could have gone either way. Colchester threw everything into this game but on the day Brentwood had the edge and deserved their win.