Going up! Crushing victory confirms Welwyn’s promotion
PUBLISHED: 15:19 16 April 2018 | UPDATED: 16:02 16 April 2018
Welwyn will be playing a league above next season after securing promotion with an outstanding 52-17 win over Old Merchant Taylors’.
The victory coupled with Stevenage Town’s loss to Grasshoppers means the Hobbs Way-based rugby club leap above their north Hertfordshire rivals into the second automatic promotion spot.
The original thought had been that two wins would have been needed, against OMT and then away to Cheshunt next Saturday in their game in hand.
But news from Stevenage gave the large crowd even more to celebrate.
They had already enjoyed a superb Welwyn performance on a beautiful day for rugby.
The hosts had taken the lead with a try from Phil Grehan, returning after a six-month absence, with Ben Osgood adding the extras.
The visitors added five points shortly after but it would be their only score of the half.
A line-out inside the OMT 22 gave Welwyn their second score, captain Will Freeston getting the final touch and a third converted try, scored by Rob Picken who had started the move with a 40 metre charge, gave Welwyn a 21-5 half-time lead.
That increased to 26 with Brad Lack crossing for the bonus-point score and Henry Fee got in on the action with try number five.
Welwyn took the opportunity of their 33-5 lead to empty their bench, bringing on Joe Burns, Cam Patey and Tom Emery.
To their credit, OMT refused to throw in the towel and a try in the corner reduced the deficit but Welwyn responded with the try of the game.
Grehan and Aaron Chandler combined to create the space for vice-captain Adam Harcourt, Osgood’s conversion taking the score to 40-10.
A minute later the Chandler-Harcourt combination were at it again with another well-constructed try down the left channel that Osgood again converted.
OMT got their third try before Harcourt finished things off after a great pass from scrum-half Yourgos Alexander.
With promotion already in the bag Welwyn will now travel to Cheshunt, who themselves were celebrating on Saturday after beating the drop, looking to put on an entertaining display to bring down the curtain on a great season.