Reeds take the spoils in a hard-fought encounter


Sunny conditions, with two sides that have a reputation for expansive, running rugby provided a brilliant afternoon’s entertainment for the huge crowd packing the touchlines at Whiteley Village to welcome KCS Old Boys for the first time in twenty years. Reeds going up the slope in the first half were under the cosh right from the start and lost two players early on to injury. KCS set up camp in Reeds 22 for large parts of the first quarter, recycled the possession from the rucks and mauls, firing the ball out wide and coming within a couple of metres of the try line. Some poor finishing coupled with Reeds back row and their three-quarter’s impressive line speed up in defence allied with some destructive, eye watering tackling, forced many handling errors, that kept Reeds line secure and also provided the opportunity for the first try. A midfield pass went to ground, young Peter Cole, the fly half, kicked the ball up field and won the race to the try line, then collected the extras with a conversion from the touchline. Moments later, Cole was in action again with a penalty shot in front of the sticks and Reeds were into an unlikely ten point lead at the break. Reeds performance at the set piece both at scrum time and line out was a significant factor in the team’s win yesterday but those lively KCS backs were a constant threat, a missed tackle drove play to Reeds five metre line, quick recycling and James Hattersley the centre crashed over for a seven pointer leaving Reeds with a narrow three-point lead. Up front was a set piece battle, with the two young Day brothers, Rhys and Lennan full of infectious energy and the immensely powerful Kerran Beavis are a front row that are a real handful in the tight scrums as well as the loose exchanges. It was their work that provided the opportunity for Marcus Clark, the young winger, he collected the ball in midfield, it didn’t look too promising, but he is seriously quick with bewildering footwork as well, his run took him over the line and Peter Cole again banged over the conversion. Those KCS backs were a constant threat, they were winning plenty of ball, quick hands and smart passing, often out the back, avoided the breakdowns and it was James Shaw the prop forward who rounded off the possession for a converted try, game on with, once again, just three points between the two sides. KCS have a deserved reputation for open running rugby, their quick men stretched the Reeds defence from one side of the park to the other. It led to a forward rumble that was try line bound and Reeds conceded a penalty try and a yellow card. KCS were now in front with a four-point lead for the first time at 17-21.  Reeds had dominated the lineout possession by way of Simon Fozard, just back from two serious leg injuries, his work rate and tackling in all areas of the game was superb and it earned him the Man of the Match Award. He collected the possession, Jonny Rogers the centre found some space for a seven pointer and a three-point lead at 21-24. It was Ethan Taylor, Reeds utility back who was the instigator of Reeds bonus point try, his inch perfect 50 / 22 kick forced a lineout on the five-metre line, Reeds got hold of the ball and Rhys Day the hooker bashed his way over the line, another steepling conversion from Peter Cole out wide Reeds were ten points in front at 21 – 31 with time running out for the visitors. Another penalty in stoppage time made certain that Reeds collected the winning league points.

Man of the Match Simon Fozzard

Nigel Connell, Reeds Director of Rugby commented afterwards that despite injury problems for key squad members, Reeds had managed to secure a significant victory against a side that has been playing in the higher leagues for many years.

Team sheet-:

Lennan Day / Rhys Day / Kerran Bevis / Cameron Goodwin / Simon Fozard / Harry Ricks / Billy Maddock / George Corner / Alex Corner (capt) / Jonathan Lack / Peter Cole / Marcus Clark / Jonny Rogers / Josh Clark / Joe Moriarty / Jack Jesty / Jonathan Levett / Ethan Tylor / Josh Foreman.

Next week Reeds travel away to Gravesend whom, like Reeds, have made a promising start to their life at level 6.

GS Oct 30th 2022