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1st XV - Match centre

Sidcup
Shelford
C Hopkins, J West
Full time
J Twyford
J Twyford (4)
Sat 30 Sep 15:00 - London & SE Division - London & SE Premier

Sidcup don't come out of their Shel

Sidcup welcomed Shelford to Crescent Farm in only our 2nd home game of the season, in front of a large crowd thanks to the annual Brian Bennett VPs and Centurions Lunch.

Written by Sonny Bill Williams

Sidcup welcomed Shelford to Crescent Farm in only our 2nd home game of the season, in front of a large crowd thanks to the annual Brian Bennett VPs and Centurions Lunch.

After gaining a good platform from a scrum in their own 22, Shelford launched a quick attack catching the Sidcup defence off guard. A penalty resulted, and a quick tap and go from their 9 caught the Sidcup defence napping as shelford were awarded with another penalty for Sidcup not being back 10 metres. Shelford slotted the kick, but Sidcup duly replied with a penalty of their own, taken by fly half Josh Twyford, after Shelford infringed around the break down in their 22.

Sidcup had plenty of possession and territory in the opening half but were unable to cross the line, partially due to a lack of clinical finishing. We were creating chances however. One particular endeavour came when Nick Agbo caught the ball of a restart and busted though 2 tackles finding James Poland who did well to fix the defending no 8 and pass to Captain Jon West (Poland taking a huge hit for his valiant efforts). However this exciting bit of interplay did not lead to a try as instead, after several resulting phases; Sidcup were penalised for holding on in the ruck.

We did manage 4 penalties through the boot of Josh Twyford, and Sidcup hoped to be going into half time with a decent lead as the score was 12-3 to the home side. However, Shelford had other plans. An effective attack up the blind side with good hands saw them race away under the posts just before the stroke of half time. This cut Sidcup’s lead to just 2 points.

An honest evaluation of our performance in the first half during the half time team talk, Sidcup aimed to enter the second half guns blazing and use our superior fitness to good affect against a tiring Shelford team.

This was not meant to be, as Shelford scored a try straight off the kick off to take the scores to 12-15. A typical slow starting Sidcup finally began to look alive and used an improvement in our attacking shape and phase play to put pressure on the Shelford defence. The first try for Sidcup came when Full Back James Poland fielded a Shelford kick near his own 22 and launched a high bomb which he successfully gathered. Playing of this momentum and gain in territory, Sidcup managed to free Charlie Hopkins up the left wing to score after good feet and hands by Josh Twyford and Ollie Vidgeon.

Charlie Hopkins looked close to scoring again as he was set up along the same left wing by flanker Dan Thomas only for Charlies trademark chip and chase down the wing to be blocked by a Shelford defender and sent into touch.

Inaccuracies in our attacking game, silly offloads and poor ball retention in contact kept Shelford In the game, and they did well to capitalise on an uncharacteristically sloppy performance from Sidcup. There was no lack of effort from the Sidcup Players, forwards and backs alike worked tirelessly in defence and with hard running in attack, but we need to question the effectiveness of our possession and whether we could have played smarter with the ball we had. Continued inconsistencies from Sidcup in all facets of the game saw 2 more Trys from Shelford which meant their lead was extended to 17-32.
Sidcup did finish with a flourish, as a clever lineout call freed up Jamie Cutler through the lineout who linked up with West and Hopkins, both showing great support lines and handling to get close to the opposition try line. From this position, Sidcup attacked with better running lines and handling to put No 8 Jon West over for a late consolation try, which was converted by Josh Twyford. This glimpse of what we are capable off came too late however, and wasn’t enough to get a losing bonus point, as Sidcup faced the unfamiliar feeling of losing at home for the first time since the 2015/16 season.

A deflating post game team talk left the players in a sombre and reflective mood. What was positive was the discussion amongst players about what went wrong, with everyone keen to remedy the problems in training. With plenty of work ons and lessons learnt from the game it’s important we react in a positive way from a frustrating loss and take this forward into a difficult away game against Barnes this coming Saturday.

P.S. the lineouts were Charlie Hopkins' fault.

Written by Sonny Bill Williams

Key moments

10:00
Penalty Joshua Twyford kicks a penalty for Sidcup
27:00
Penalty Joshua Twyford kicks a penalty for Sidcup
35:00
Penalty Joshua Twyford kicks a penalty for Sidcup
38:00
Penalty Joshua Twyford kicks a penalty for Sidcup
48:00
Try Charlie Hopkins scores for Sidcup
78:00
Try Jon West scores for Sidcup
79:00
Conversion Joshua Twyford kicks a conversion for Sidcup

Highlights

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79:00 Conversion 24 - 0
Joshua Twyford kicks a conversion for Sidcup
78:00 Try 22 - 0
Jon West scores for Sidcup
48:00 Try 17 - 0
Charlie Hopkins scores for Sidcup
End of period 1
38:00 Penalty 12 - 0
Joshua Twyford kicks a penalty for Sidcup
35:00 Penalty 9 - 0
Joshua Twyford kicks a penalty for Sidcup
27:00 Penalty 6 - 0
Joshua Twyford kicks a penalty for Sidcup
10:00 Penalty 3 - 0
Joshua Twyford kicks a penalty for Sidcup
Start of the game
Replay game

As it happened

  • Sidcup
  • Shelford
  • 0
  • Joshua Twyford Penalty 10:00'
  • Joshua Twyford Penalty 27:00'
  • Joshua Twyford Penalty 35:00'
  • Joshua Twyford Penalty 38:00'
  • Charlie Hopkins Try 48:00'
  • Jon West Try 78:00'
  • Joshua Twyford Conversion 79:00'

Team selection

Poland, James Poland, James
O'Leary, Max O'Leary, Max
Vidgeon, Olivier Vidgeon, Olivier
McMahon, Colby McMahon, Colby
Keeley, Louis Keeley, Louis
Twyford, Joshua Twyford, Joshua
Ibrahim, Ben Ibrahim, Ben
West, Jon West, Jon
Williams, Billy Williams, Billy
Thomas, Dan Thomas, Dan
Coughlan, Luke Coughlan, Luke
Dutton, Jack Dutton, Jack
Agbo, Nicholas Agbo, Nicholas
Hopkins, Charlie Hopkins, Charlie
Aldam, Guy Aldam, Guy

League round up

Other London & SE Premier results

Sutton & Epsom
30
29
Dorking
24
20

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League table

# Team Pl Pts
7. Sutton & Epsom 13 37
8. Dorking 13 36
9. Sidcup 13 32
10. Guildford 13 30
11. Shelford 13 28
12. Southend Saxons 13 17
13. Westcombe Park 13 15

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