Comfortable bonus-point win has Datchworth looking at a very merry Christmas indeed
PUBLISHED: 07:00 05 December 2018
Datchworth are looking to finish 2018 on a high after a convincing victory over Old Merchant Taylors' moved them to the fringes of the promotion places.
The 30-5 success means they are now third in London Three North West, just one place and one point behind Old Streetonians in second.
And with two games left before the Christmas break, both against sides in the bottom five of the table, the Men in Green will be looking to break into the top two.
Both sides wanted to play running rugby despite the wet conditions but the early stages saw a number of turnovers.
But the villagers got the first score on 10 minutes, Billy Gatfield crossing the line after good work from Alex Nolan, James Watt and Matt Francis.
The second home try came via pressure from the forwards.
Tom Blackwell, Sam McBroom and Francis all carried the ball forward before Sam Brunton switched the play to send Sam Thornton over with an outstretched arm.
Tom Wood added the extras and then kicked a penalty, awarded for an infringement at the scrum.
Datchworth saw the half out with just 14 men after a yellow card for Ross Merrilees.
But he was back for the start of the second half and it wasn’t long after the restart that the hosts had their third try of the day..
Gatfield showed some skill with a not-so-subtle show and go, allowing the backs to make hay and Francis to go over next to the posts. Wood added the conversion for a 22-0 lead.
A dropped ball immediately after gave OMT an easy five points but it would prove to be their only score of the contest.
The bonus-point try arrived with 15 minutes to go.
With OMT on the counter attack, Jake Ebhodaghe made a last-ditch cover tackle on the halfway line to turn over the ball.
From there slow ball was quickly recycled and after going through a number of hands it arrived to Watt and he finished off from 40 yards.
There was still time for one last score for Datchworth, Wood bagging another three points with a penalty, and home fans will have been delighted to see captain Nick Gudgin come on for the last five minutes as he makes his long-awaited return from injury.