1stXV 28 Old Albanian 24, Sat Sep 09 2017, National 1
Ampthill welcomed Old Albanian to Dillingham Park on a near windless day of sunshine & showers wkth perfect underfoot playing conditions.
Amps squad saw multiple changes from that which played against Moseley.
A’s made the worst possible start conceding a 3rd minute try by blindside Hartwell & a 5th minute try to centre Watt who added both conversions. Much of the rest of the half was played deep inside Albanian territory but a combination of inaccuracy in the red zone and strong defence from the visitors restricted the hosts to one 28th minute try scored by number 8 Syd Blackmore and converted by fly half Lawrence Rayner.
With the score 7-14 at oranges it was the home side’s coaching team who had much more to say during the break.
The second half began with a fine 15 man 45th minute try for the hosts scored by Paino Hehea whose Tongan sidestep carried the cover as well as the ball over the line after backs and forwards had combined to move the ball 70m, Rayner hitting his second of four succesful conversions.
In the 57th minute Amps full back Karim Lynch’s outragous sidestep wrong footed the whole defence for him to cross to the left of the posts.
The 61st minute saw Ampthill penalised at a breakdown after a fine period of pressure from Old Albanian and centre Watt convert the penalty goal to bring the score to 21-17
On 68 minutes Blackmore touched down his second try under the posts after taking an inside ball on the burst.
With A’s now leading 28-17 and the bench emptied, Albanian fought back to put the hosts under pressure for the last 10 minutes and were rewarded, after A’s were reduced to 14 players for persistent infringements at red zone mauls, with a 79th minute converted try by wing Morris.
This was a curates egg performance by Ampthill, a poor first half was improved upon in the second but Old Albanian were well worth their bonus point, on another day they might of had more!
Tries: Blackmore(28, 68), Hehea(45), Lynch(57)
Cons: Rayner(29, 46, 58, 69)
Tries: Hartwell(2), Watt(5), Morris(79)
Cons: Watt(3, 6, 80)
Referee: Philip Davies
Half-time: Ampthill 7 Old Albanian 14
Star man: Syd Blackmore (Ampthill)