Tabard squander lead in Letchworth defeat

Tabard squandered a lead against Letchworth

Tabard squandered a lead against Letchworth

First published in Sport

Tabard slipped to a 22-20 defeat at Letchworth in London League One North despite holding a 15-point lead during the game.

The visitors played with the gusting wind and the slope in the first half.

This enabled them to put pressure on Letchworth but this did not bring points until eight minutes into the game.

Tabard’s centre Jack Reilly kicked a penalty to put Tabard three points ahead.

The team continued to dominate and were edging the game up front despite Letchworth’s bigger pack and this enabled them to have more than their fair share of possession.

But Letchworth nearly scored a breakaway try but the referee brought them back for an infringement. Tabard’s backs then showed some flair, stand off Gerry Arasa ran through in his own half, centre Joe Calnan carried the move on but was stopped just short. The visitors recycled efficiently and Reilly made a powerful surge through for the score which he converted.

Tabard were soon able to increase their lead, this time second row Sam Barrow, who had a storming game throughout, took a clean lineout ball and from the drive, number eight Cam O’Connor claimed the touchdown. Tabard’s luck deserted them again and, in their own 22 metre area, Letchworth pressure caused a pass to go awry and the loose ball was pounced on by Richard Streets as the centre crossed the line.

This meant Tabard’s lead was cut to 15-5 at the break.

After the restart Letchworth were quickly into their stride and scored a good try of their own when the ball was opened up wide and stand off Davis scored with full-back Simon Hrbek adding the conversion. Midway through the half, Letchworth took the lead for the first time when wing Jaggy Johal scampered up the touchline for the try following a break. Hrbek converted and this put his side four points clear.

Despite playing uphill and into the wind Tabard kept their heads and repeated pressure near their opponent’s line brought the home side a yellow card.

Tabard capitalised on their one man advantage with another lineout drive for the try, claimed again by O’Connor, to give them a one point lead in the contest.

With seven minutes remaining Hrbek converted a penalty for Letchworth and Tabard did not have enough time to reply as they fell to a narrow defeat.

It was a family affair in more ways than one in Tabard Seconds’ game at Welwyn on Saturday.

Two fathers, Roger Beadle and Nigel Gough, each played with their two sons, Harry and George Gough and Chris and Bradley Beadle, on the pitch.

Tabard won 55-12 with both families claiming points.

There is no Tabard game this weekend with their next match coming on March 22 at home to North Walsham.

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