Time to bring the fun back to Welwyn after Harpenden clinch deserved league win

PUBLISHED: 17:02 17 January 2019

Aaron Chandler tries to wriggle clear for Welwyn against Harpenden. 

Picture: Karyn Haddon

Aaron Chandler tries to wriggle clear for Welwyn against Harpenden. Picture: Karyn Haddon


Welwyn need to get back to what they do best if they are to break out of their slump – play rugby with a smile on their face.

Their 52-13 home defeat to Harpenden, extended their recent run to six games without a win.

And head coach Gareth Hughes believes they have just forgotten the real reason they gather at Hobbs Way every Saturday.

He said: “I spoke to them under the posts [in the second half] and said I think we’ve all forgotten why we are here.

“We’re here to enjoy ourselves ultimately and maybe the coaching team and players have forgotten that in the last couple of weeks and we’ve got too serious.

“So we told them to just go and enjoy themselves in the last 20.

“The last try was a prime example. We made Harpenden work for that try and you can’t ask for more than that.

“We’re in the league above this year and we’ve come a long way in the last three years and the future is bright at Welwyn.

“We’ve got a young team, nobody is going anywhere and people are starting to come to the club. We’re in a good place.”

The match itself started well enough with a Dave Fennell try and then a Chris Kemp penalty twice putting them into the lead.

But once Harpenden got their noses in front there was only going to be one winning, a fact that Hughes agreed with.

He said: “Harpenden are a very good outfit with a really good front five. They are well coached, well drilled and there are no complaints on the day.

“From our point of view we’re a bit disappointed but we’re in a bit of a rut at the moment.

“Losing can be a habit as can winning.

“We started the season really well and what I would say is the group of lads we’ve got are young and eager to play, eager to learn and eager to stick together.

“You cannot fault the heart of this team. They’ll keep going and we’ll find a solution to this.”

He can still see a strong finish to the year though and has set his team a target.

He said: “We had a few losses in December that we shouldn’t have and this year has been tough we’ve played the top two who will be there or thereabouts at the end of the season.

“We’ve now got seven games left in the league and four of them are at home so we can have a really good push to finish in the top four.

“That’s our target and that will be a really good season.”

Welwyn go to Grasshoppers next on January 26.

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